“The Last Thing on My Mind Was Art”

1960s Board Firsts Founders

Stefan Edlis describes his earliest encounters with the MCA.

The year was 1967, I think. That's when it first started. I came to Chicago in 1965. I was 33 years old; got my big job here. And the last thing on my mind was art. So I was not even close to understanding the motives of the old guard that was excited, pressured, or motivated to start something new other than the Art Institute. I did meet Ed Bergman at the time, later on, and Joe Shapiro, but we're talking about, at minimum, five years after I came here when I realized there was such a thing as an MCA. The Museum of Contemporary Art. MCA is a modern term.

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