The Luminarts Cultural Foundation cultivates Chicago’s vibrant arts community by supporting exemplary young artists through its competitive programs that offer financial awards, artistic opportunities, and mentoring that bridge the gap between education and career.


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Founded in 1949 as the Union League Civic & Arts Foundation (CAF), Luminarts Cultural Foundation was created by members of the Union League Club of Chicago as a separate, not-for-profit organization. Deeply rooted in the Union League Club of Chicago, Luminarts strengthens the cultural community of Chicago by upholding the club’s century-long tradition of advocating for the arts. Luminarts is dedicated to encouraging our city’s outstanding young artists so that their emerging talent might be heard in performance halls, read within libraries and homes, and exhibited in galleries, museums, and the hallowed walls of the Union League Club.

News & Events

Click HERE for a listing of our 2022 Luminarts Events. Also be sure to subscribe to our email list and receive updates regarding program announcements, Fellows, events, and the monthly Luminarts Letter!


Luminarts welcomes talented young artists of all social, economic and cultural backgrounds. As a young visual artist, musician, vocalist, or writer from the Chicago area, we invite and encourage you to compete for grants, creative opportunities, and to become Luminarts Fellows.

Luminarts Fellowship Opportunities

The Luminarts Fellowship includes programs in Visual Arts, Creative Writing, Classical Music, and Jazz. In order to be eligible to apply for the Fellowship Program applicants must be between the ages of 18 and 30, live or reside within 150 miles of the Chicago Loop, and be currently enrolled in, or graduated from, a degree program, conservatory, or other professional artist development program.

Luminarts also offers extensive opportunities for Luminarts Fellows through Fellow Project Grants to support special residency opportunities, lectures, workshops, mentorship, and facilitated conversations that provide valuable insights into building a successful career in the arts and strengthening our community of participating artists.

Fellow Project Grants

Luminarts Fellows are eligible to apply for Fellow Project Grants; available only to Luminarts Fellows to support career development opportunities, such as residencies, master classes, exhibition and performance expenses, material costs, publishing projects, professional travel, and more.

While these grants can be used for a broad array of career development opportunities. Applicants must demonstrate how the funding will support this development, and how the funded experience will in turn benefit the Chicago community. Applicant requests for funding may not exceed $2,500 and the total request must be no more than 50 percent of the total expenditure. Project Grants will be reviewed twice per year. Deadlines to apply are October 15 and March 15. Fellows will be notified about the status of their proposal within four weeks of the application deadline. The next deadline to apply is October 15, 2019.

For questions about project grants and eligibility click below or contact the Foundation at info@luminarts.org or call (312) 435-5961.

Frequently Asked Questions


Introducing the Chicago area’s most talented, emerging young artists. Join us in celebrating their exceptional creativity and work.



Sold Out!


Mary and Lionel Go
Luminarts Board of Directors


Saturday, October 2, 2021
6 – 9 PM

The Arts Club of Chicago
201 E Ontario St, Chicago, IL

Cocktail/Gallery Chic


Come together again for Luminarts’ signature celebration, Next begins Now! The event will feature world-class performances, studio visits, and readings by Chicago’s most outstanding, emerging artists, an elegant dinner and cocktail reception, and an exciting live auction with works by Nick Cave and Michelle Grabner. Proceeds from Next begins Now will provide the life-changing resources needed by exemplary, young artists to launch a professional career in the arts.

All guests will be invited to attend a private after-party immediately following at the Union League Club of Chicago, generously sponsored by our Co-Chairs.

As part of efforts to ensure the safety of all artists and patrons, attendees will be asked to wear masks unless actively eating or drinking in accordance with current CDC guidelines. The evening will begin with a seated cocktail hour, followed by theater-style performances and presentations (during which guests will be asked to wear masks regardless of vaccination status), and conclude with a plated dinner. To further protect the wellbeing of those in attendance, extra masks and hand sanitizer will be provided. 

We thank everyone for their cooperation in ensuring the safety of our community so that we may come together to celebrate our fantastic Fellows.

For updates, please visit luminarts.org/nbn or contact Marlena Dzis, Development Director, at marley@luminarts.org or (312) 692-2379. To view sponsorship opportunities, please click HERE.


Make a Donation


Presenting Sponsor

Innovation Sponsors

Mary and Lionel Go &

Doug Walker

Creativity Sponsors


Myrna W. Kaplan

Dr. Sally Metzler and George Dunea, MD

Cherilyn G. Murer

Matt R. Olaveson and Adam G. Vitale

William Richards &

Impact Sponsors

Mark and Lynne Arizmendi
Chartwell Insurance Services
Scott and Edie Fortman
David Helverson and Wells Fargo Advisors
Thompson Coburn LLP
Shade Family Foundation
Brian and Robin Velo

Thank you to our Host Committee!*

Matt R. Olaveson, Chair

Mark and Lynne Arizmendi
Sarah de Blasio
Mike and Cheryl Del Campo
Mr. Michael J. Dompke
John and Connie Donnelly
Celine Fitzgerald
Mr. and Mrs. C. Luther Fors, II
Scott and Edie Fortman
David Helverson
L. Jessica Jagielnik
Karen and Bob Jones
Myrna W. Kaplan
Kylie A. Krizek
Susan Lape and Tim Bowling
Lindsay and Kyle Mackey
Dr. Sally Metzler and George Dunea, MD
Emily F. Moreno
Cherilyn G. Murer
Ken Norgan
Tope Sadiku and Aaron-Michael Sapp
Steve. Schlegel
Doug Walker
Rebecca Woan

*As of July 21, 2021



Union League Club of Chicago
Museum Of Contemporary Art Chicago
Union League Boys And Girls Clubs
Alliance of Artists Communities
Hyde Park Art Center
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Chicago Youth Symphony Orchestra
Chicago Artists Coalition Logo
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The Luminarts Cultural Foundation provides grant funding to local organizations through developed core partnerships that align with Luminarts’ mission. The Foundation does not accept unsolicited grant proposals, letters of inquiry, or other unsolicited monetary requests.

If you have questions about Luminarts and its partnerships please contact info@luminarts.org.


The Luminarts Cultural Foundation cultivates Chicago’s vibrant arts community by supporting exemplary young artists through its competitive programs that offer financial awards, artistic opportunities, and mentoring that bridge the gap between education and career.

Interested in making a gift to Luminarts?

  • To make an online contribution via credit card, please click here.
  • To make a gift over the phone, please call Marlena Dzis, Development Director, at (312) 692-2379.
  • To make a gift via check, please send your check, made out to “Luminarts Cultural Foundation” to:

Attn: Marlena Dzis
Development Director, Luminarts Cultural Foundation
65 W. Jackson Blvd.
Chicago, IL 60604-3598

Are you a member of the Union League Club of Chicago? If you are a Union League Club of Chicago Member and would like to use your ULC Member Number to make a contribution please contact Luminarts at (312) 435-5961 or info@luminarts.org to provide your ULC Member Number and contribution amount.

Questions or comments? Please contact Marlena Dzis, Development Director, at marley@luminarts.org or (312) 692-2379.

Thank You to Our 2020 Donors

This list reflects gifts made between January 1, 2020 to December 31, 2020. Luminarts sincerely apologizes for any omissions or spelling errors. Please contact Marlena Dzis, Development Director, at 312-692-2379 or marley@luminarts.org with any corrections.


BMO Wealth Management
Mr. Tilden Cummings Jr.
Mr. Frank M. De Vincentis
Ms. Roxanne J. Decyk and Dr. Lew Watts
The Edward S. Sprague Foundation
The Elizabeth Morse Charitable Trust
Ms. Myrna W. Kaplan, Liaison for Strategic Partnerships
Dr. Sally Metzler and George Dunea, MD
Ms. Cherilyn G. Murer
Mr. Matt R. Olaveson and Mr. Adam G. Vitale
Mr. William E. Richards and North Star Family Office
Mr. Douglas K. Walker

$5,000 – 9,999

Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Illinois
Mr. and Mrs. Mike and Cheryl Del Campo
Fitzgerald Family Foundation
Mr. and Mrs. Scott and Edie Fortman and Gibbons, Fortman & Associates
Mr. and Mrs. Lionel and Mary Go
Mr. James F. Kinoshita and Ms. Merrillyn J. Kosier
Mrs. and Mr. Lindsay and Kyle A. Mackey
Ms. Leslie McMillan
Mr. Jay Morton & Mr. Michael Phillips
Ms. Kimberly A. Palmisano
Mr. Stephen J. Schlegel
Mr. Hunt R. Tackbary and Ms. Mackenzie Madsen
TAWANI Foundation
Mr. and Mrs. Brian and Robin Velo

$2,500 – 4,999

Mr. and Mrs. Mark and Lynne Arizmendi and Northwestern Capital Partners
Mr. Eric E. Boyd
Mrs. Gretchen Anne Burch
Ms. Sarah de Blasio
Mr. Richard D. Doermer
Mr. James R. Gillespie
Mr. Michael C. Goode
Ambassador Fay Hartog-Levin and Mr. Daniel Levin
Ms. Martha Jahn Martin and Mr. Lee Martin
John R. Halligan Charitable Fund
Mr. Jason Kalajainen and Mr. Joshua Shames
Mr. Thomas Karaba and Ms. Marsha Hoover
Mr. Ken Norgan
Mrs. and Mr. Julianna and Tom Tancredi
Thompson Coburn LLP
U.S. Bank Private Wealth Management
Mr. William S. Wigoda and Ms. Linda J. Jakubs

$1,000 – 2,499

A. N. & Pearl G. Barnett Family Foundation
Ms. Susan Marie Aurinko
Ms. Peggy N. Boyer
Mr. Bruce W. Breitweiser
Mr. and Mrs. Barry and Marcia Cesafsky
Dr. Muhammad Munir Chaudry and The Islamic Food and Nutrition Council of America
Mr. and Mrs. John and Connie Donnelly
Mr. and Mrs. Tom and Lisa Fitzgerald
Ms. Sharon Furiya and John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation
Mr. Patrick Gleason and William Blair
Mr. David L. Hanson
Mr. Andrew Robert Harrison
Mr. David A. Helverson
Mr. and Mrs. Jock G. Howland
Mr. George L. Jewell
Mrs. and Mr. Jennifer and Curtis Krizek
Mr. Zach Leonard
Ms. Diana Levin
Mr. Kerry James Marshall and Ms. Cheryl Lynn Bruce
Mr. John Q. McKinnon
Mr. Gary Metzner and the Metzner Family Foundation
Ms. Mara Mills Barker
Ms. Corinne S. Morrissey
Mrs. and Mr. Iris and Steven Podolsky
Mr. Seaton Tinsley Preston III
Mr. Richard Ryan
Ms. Kelly Sassi
Shade Family Foundation
Ms. Joan M. Solbeck
Mr. Christopher Taylor
Mr. and Mrs. Thomas and Linda Teichgraeber
Mr. David B. Whitehurst
Mr. and Mrs. Joseph and Kelly Wicklander
Mrs. Helen Zell

$500 – 999

Mr. Bruce Jay Baker
Mr. Gerald Bauman
Mr. William M. Beckemeier
Mr. Greg Cameron and Mr. Greg Thompson
Mr. Linton J. Childs
Mrs. Terri D’Ancona
Mr. John DeBlasio
Mr. Fred Drucker
Mr. James Dugan
Mr. and Mrs. Gregg and Wendy Elstien
Mr. Daniel N. Epstein
Mr. Thomas L. Gahlon
Mrs. Karen Hagberg
Mr. Keith A. Hebeisen
Mr. and Mrs. Brian and Mary Herbstritt
Ms. Karen M. Jones
Mr. and Mrs. Gerould and Jewell Kern
Mr. Robert D. Kreisman
Mr. John F. Lemker Jr.
Judge Benjamin S. Mackoff and Mrs. Carol L. Mackoff
Mr. Jerry Manne
Ms. Margaret McCoy
Mrs. and Mr. Michele and Neal McCrillis
Mr. and Dr. William J. and MaryAnn McGrath
Dr. Sam Mikaelian
Mr. James Mitchell
Ms. Emily F. Moreno
Mr. and Mrs. Jaime and Anna Moreno
Mr. William J. Nissen
Mr. James V. Noonan
Mr. Todd Petersen
The Philip M. Friedmann Family Charitable Trust
Mr. Randy Reeves
Mr. Robert J. Ryan
Mr. Hugh J. Schwartzberg
Mr. Ronald Seliga
Ms. Gloria Brooks Shapiro
Mr. Martin J. Stock
The Strobel Family Charitable Fund
Mrs. and Mr. Kay and Craig Tuber
Mr. Lance Wahl

$250 – 499

Ms. Maggie Annerino
Ms. Julia Antonatos
Mr. James B. Begley
Mr. John H. Berchem
Mr. John Blang
Ms. Marion Clemens
Mr. Mark W. Coe
Ms. Cynthia L. Doloughty
Ms. Marilyn Beth Dresser
Mr. Michael Edward Simons
Mr. Robert Feldgreber
Ms. Kathleen M. Flanagan
Mr. Michael W. Franke
Dr. Lisa Freeman and Dr. Doug Rose
Mr. Aron Gent
Mr. Brian Golinvaux
Mr. James C. Green
Mr. Lewis B. Greenblatt
Mr. Richard L. Handley
Mr. Terry R. Hendrickson
Ms. Kimberlee S. Herold
Ms. Andrea F. Hoeschen
Ms. Bobbie Huskey
Mr. TJ Johnsrud
Mr. D. Carroll Joynes and Ms. Abby McCormick O’Neil
Mr. Thomas Koltun
Ms. Tammy Lemke
Mr. David May-Stein
Mr. James J. Morgan
Ms. Caroline Moyer
Mr. Robert L. Murphy
Mr. Frank R. Niederman
Mr. Daniel North
Mr. Thomas F. Olenick
Mr. Frank P. Orzel
Ms. Catherine R. Paddock
Ms. Nancy A. Ross
Mr. Jason M. Schoettmer
Mr. Michael Edwards Simons
Mrs. Joan L. Stansberry
Mr. Mark Tecotzky
Mr. Andrew Turczyn
Ms. Andrea Vitale
Mr. Clark L. Wagner
Ms. Brooke M. Wiseman
Mr. Paul J. Wisner
Ms. Susan Zucker

$150 – 249

Mr. K. Stephen Anderson
Mr. James O. Berry
Ms. Wendy J. Betts
Mrs. Joan H. Blumenthal
Msgr. Michael Boland
Ms. Andrea Louise Brown
Dr. Martin C. Burke
Judge Michael Thomas Caldwell
Mr. Kenneth Paul Caniglia
Mr. Jeffrey O. Chen and Mrs. Victoria Cheng
Mr. Thomas Robert Corsiglia
Mr. Christopher R. D’Andrea
Ms. Amy Starr Feder
Mr. William C. Glynn
Mr. Thomas M. Hazlett
Mr. Jeff Heise
Mr. Dennis Hughes
Mr. Matthew J. Iverson
Dr. Albert O. Jacobson PhD
Mr. and Mrs. Jagjit and Rani Jain
Mr. Charles H. Jesser
Mr. David J. Jolivette
Ms. Diane Kordecki
Mr. William N. Krucks
Mr. Timothy Larocca
Mr. Andrew W. Levenfeld
Mr. Ronald G. Lindenberg
Ms. Tanya Lux
Mr. Douglas Marshall
Mr. Tony B. McGuire PE
Mr. Barry Mendel
Rev. Craig Biddick Mousin
Mr. Bert C. Nicholson
Mr. John A. O’Connor
Mr. Michael D. Olesen
Dr. Melanie K. Patrick
Mr. Ronald Pfeiffer
Mr. Neil J. Prendergast
Mr. Mark H. Prince
Mr. Keith A. Reed
Mr. Daniel E. Reidy
Mrs. Solvig G. Robertson
Ms. Laurel Anne Rundle
Mr. Richard L. Rundle
Dr. Susan W. Rusch
Mr. John W. Schladweiler
Mrs. Karen A. Schlueter
Dr. Emanuel Semerad
Mr. Jeffrey S. Sharp
Mr. William M. Sneed
Mr. Lawrence G. Staat
Ms. Jane Stevens
Hon. Jo Ann C. Stevenson
Mr. Kristofer K. Swanson
Ms. Peggy Swartchild
Ms. Nan Tecotzky
Mr. George M. Thomas
Mr. Stephen P. Thomas
Ms. I.B. Weil
Dr. Sandra L. Williams
Mr. Richard Demarest Yant
Mr. Keith E. Yavitt