CFL News
September 20, 2011

Theater performance features art exhibit by Chicago-area union members

Union art work on display at TimeLine Theatre connects true tale of "The Pitmen Painters" to today

In addition to experiencing the highly-acclaimed stage production, patrons at the TimeLine Theater's The Pitmen Painters, running now through December 4, will be treated to a lobby exhibit featuring work by a number of Chicago-area union members.

Rick Ernst, Teamsters Local 703, Michael Lowe, Teamsters Local 700, Antonio Martinez, Chicago Journeymen Plumbers Local 130, David Reninger, American Federation of Teachers, Jennifer Taylor, AFTRA/SAG and Actors' Equity Association, and Jeanette Thompson, Chicago Alliance of Charter Teachers and Staff all contributed original contemporary art to the exhibit. 

According to TimeLine Theatre Artistic Director PJ Powers, “This unique art exhibit celebrates the creative talents of a variety of Chicago-area union employees. Featuring the work of modern-day ‘Pitmen Painters’ with this fascinating, funny, thoughtful new play provides a direct connection to the creativity, loyalty and solidarity of union workers that still flourishes today.”

More works by these same artists are also on display at the nearby Art De Triumph/Artful Framer Studios, located around the corner from TimeLine Theatre at 2938 N. Clark Street.

The Pitmen Painters, a play based on the true story of a group of union miners in 1930s Northern England who took an art appreciation class, started experimenting with painting, and soon built an astonishing body of work that made them the unlikeliest of art world sensations.

TimeLine Theatre Company, named the nation’s theater “Company of the Year” by The Wall Street Journal in 2010 and Best Theatre by Chicago Magazine in its “Best of Chicago” issue in 2011, is presenting the Chicago premiere of The Pitmen Painters by Lee Hall, directed by Northlight Theatre Artistic Director BJ Jones, now through December 4, 2011 at TimeLine Theatre, 615 W. Wellington Ave., Chicago. To purchase tickets or for more information about The Pitmen Painters, call the TimeLine Theatre Box Office at 773.281.8463 x6 or visit

Special Ticket Discount for Union Members: Members of Chicago-area unions with valid ID receive $5 OFF regular ticket prices when using code “UNION.” There is a limit of 4 discounted tickets per order, and the discount may not be applied to previously purchased tickets nor be combined with any other offer. Tickets are subject to availability.