Chicago Music Artist femdot. and Muralist Liz Flores Partner with Play Together

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Artist advocacy nonprofit teams up with Chicago music and visual artists for year-long collaborate project to raise funds and awareness for nonprofit, Delacreme Scholars

femdot. was named "Chicago's New Rap Sensation," according to Nylon Magazine

When Play Together came to me with the idea to collaborate with a talented artist to drive support for Delacreme Scholars, I saw it as a great opportunity to invest in the next generation of Chicago artists of color.

Chicago-based artist advocacy nonprofit, Play Together, has onboarded two respected local artists: femdot., a first-generation US-born Chicago rapper and social activist, along with the sought-after fine artist, muralist, and TedX speaker, Liz Flores, for its next audio-visual collaboration to benefit the nonprofit Delacreme Scholars. Delacreme Scholars was founded by femdot. and will direct funds provided by the Play Together collaboration to offer art scholarships to Black and Brown youth artists of Chicago.

femdot. has committed to releasing two singles as a part of the Play Together collaboration. "Back Home" and "Lifetime", featuring fellow Chicago rapper Saba, explores elements of who femdot. is and hopes to set up a larger story down the line. It’s rooted in experiences that he feels embodies his current mindset and will be released November 5th. Flores will draw inspiration from the music to create a painting and a mural dedicated to the project located in Chicago’s Uptown neighborhood.

Collaboration artwork will be released as limited-edition premium denim jackets as well as signed art prints, available for purchase. The original Flores painting will be available for purchase through the collaboration. After covering the costs of the project, including fair compensation to the artists for their time and artwork, all remaining proceeds from the collaboration merchandise will be directed to Delacreme Scholars. Play Together has furthermore pledged a minimum $5,000 distribution to Delacreme.

As a thank you for significant donations provided, key donors will be given exclusive access to a virtual roundtable discussion on equity and arts education with Chicago nonprofit leaders and Collaboration artists. Key Donors will also have their name included in the mural to commemorate their support for the project.

The mission of Delacreme Scholars is to provide micro-scholarships to Black and Brown students of Chicago and abroad who require mid-semester funds to remain in their college education. Proceeds of Play Together Collaboration #2 will be directed to art students of color (writing, music, visual arts, performing arts, and design) through Delacreme scholarships.

“As a Black man in America, who has seen what wealth looks like and what poverty looks like, I understand that gap and how we are left without resources,” femdot. said.

“College was a struggle for me to afford; becoming an artist was even more challenging. I’ve lost so many friends to violence or jail. With friends who sell drugs, friends who go to school, and friends who are forced to sell drugs to afford to go to school, I am motivated to drive another path to well-being and education through Delacreme Scholars.

When Play Together came to me with the idea to collaborate with a talented artist to drive support for Delacreme Scholars, I saw it as a great opportunity to invest in the next generation of Chicago artists of color.”

Flores was selected by femdot. and his team from a list of potential artists, as they felt her colorful, minimalist and humanistic artwork would be the perfect stylistic match to accompany and bring the music to life. Flores showcases the shared complexities of being human, the female form and the importance of connection and community. This unique perspective is what attracted large brands such as Jack Daniels and Lululemon to commission her to create original murals for their commercial spaces, as well as is what fuels a loyal following of her work, who support her vision with purchases of canvas and prints on her site: lizfloresart.com.

“I really resonate with Play Together’s mission to help the next generation of Chicago creatives,” Flores said. “I always want my art to have meaning and life behind it – to have a purpose.”

“Being able to partner with Play Together on a project like this gives me that opportunity to give back. I’m also really fascinated with the opportunity to bridge two creative industries in Chicago by collaborating with femdot. and bringing our communities together.

One of the things that I love about femdot.’s music is his ability to storytell and articulate unique human experiences. This is something I’m excited to bring into my work as an artist, visualizing his music and bringing his work to life in a whole new medium.”

The concept of Play Together is to unite artists and donors mutually concerned with social impact. The nonprofit provides the artists a one-stop shop to give back to their communities by raising proceeds for a Chicago youth arts program of their choice. "Chicago is one of the most diverse cities in the United States, yet also is one of the most segregated," said Play Together founder Jessica Tenuta. "Throughout history, artists have been at the forefront of challenging systems of power -- we're proud to be their platform to invest in the next generation of Chicago creators."

The collaboration with femdot. and Liz Flores builds on the positive momentum of its initial collaboration. In 2019, Play Together paired Chicago-based soul-inspired Indie rock act, Violet Crime, with Chicago fine artist, Julius Bautista. Together, they raised funds for Intonation Music, which funds instructional hours and instruments for Bronzeville students in after-school music programming. The collaboration was featured in the Chicago Sun Times and Substream Magazine which led to a sold-out collaboration release show at the Bottom Lounge, featuring Intonation Music students playing alongside Violet Crime.

To learn more about this collaboration, the timing of femdot.’s Play Together releases and how to secure your pre-order of the limited-edition merchandise, please visit http://playtogether.co/femdot-flores-delacreme.

About Play Together
Play Together is a 501(c)(3) artist advocacy nonprofit organization that provides leading Chicago artists a platform to invest in our city's youth arts programs through the release of audio/visual collaborations. Each Play Together collaboration strategically pairs a musician with a visual artist to benefit a chosen nonprofit cause in Chicago. Play Together is backed by the music and tech community of the Chicagoland area.

Play Together is backed by Howard Tullman (co-founder Tribeca Flashpoint Academy and former CEO of 1871); Gregg Latterman (angel investor and founder of Aware Records, which discovered and signed John Mayer); Eric Montanez, co-founder of Nicework and manager of Chance The Rapper) and Dan Dal Degan (former CEO of SpringCM, which was acquired by DocuSign for $220M). Dan has also volunteered to be a board member for Play Together.

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Derek Blidy
Play Together
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