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Pilsen, Little Village, Back of the Yards

Artist Czr Prz’s Ava Grey Studio Opening Studio In Pilsen: ‘This Is Huge For Us’

The 1,500-square-foot plan will bring an art gallery and a creative workspace to the corner of 19th and Wood streets.

Artist Czr Prz's mural of legendary Mexican priest Fray Tormenta who was a professional Lucha Libre wrestler to raise money to help orphans. The mural is at Peoria Street between 16th Street and 16th Place in Pilsen.
Czr Prz/ Instagram
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PILSEN — Ava Grey, a design and production house that serves as homebase for street artist Czr Prz, has found a new home near the National Museum of Mexican Art in Pilsen.

Czr Prz, whose real name is Caesar Perez, and co-founder Nick Glazebrook are opening the 1,500-square-foot creative workspace and gallery at 1758 W. 19th St. later this year.

“It will have a very creative, energetic feel,” he said.

Perez is the creative force behind Ava Grey. For more than six years, Perez and Glazebrook worked out of Mana Contemporary, a sprawling art center at 2233 S. Throop St. in Pilsen.

The pair will keep some fabrication and large-scale productions at Mana, but they will shift their creative work space to 19th Street to foster more opportunities with the community.

“This our first time having a storefront space. We have been in Mana away from everyone, so this is huge for us,” Glazebrook said.

The move allows them to evolve creatively while being in the heart of the community and grow the business, Perez said.

Credit: Mauricio Peña/ Block Club Chicago
Artist Czr Prz’s Ava Grey Studio has found a new home at 1758 W. 19th St. near Harrison park and the National Museum of Mexican Art in Pilsen.

Perez’s Cuban-Mexican upbringing has a heavy influence in his work, which spans various mediums and materials. He works on murals, paintings, illustrations and more.

Perez’s murals can be found across the city. Last fall, Perez and more than 30 artists created numerous murals along the Peoria Street viaduct between 16th Street and 16th Place. 

Perez created a mural of legendary Mexican priest and professional wrestler Fray Tormenta. In 2015, he also created a mural for Bridgford Foods in Fulton Market. The mural pays tribute to the city’s meatpacking history, according to DNAinfo. 

Perez has also worked to create packages for items from Dark Matter Coffee. He’s also worked with Shedd Aquarium, North Coast Festival Pilsen Fest, Red Bull, Miller Light and more. 

Perez and Glazebrook hope to open in late spring or summer pending coronavirus safety precautions. They hope to have the space open by appointment based on safety.

They ultimately aim to host small events for networking in hopes of cultivating more relationships with collaborators and clients.

“The move is to get more visibility within the community,” Perez said.

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