Kerry James Marshall

Twelve years ago he earned a “genius” grant for his creative vision. Since winning that MacArthur Fellowship, Kerry James Marshall has produced waves of art for an international audience, all from his cluttered studio in the historic Bronzeville neighborhood.

This year as part of our Chicago Matters series “Beyond Burnham,” we’re profiling 10 of the Chicago area’s most interesting innovators. Here’s a look at a Chicago man who’s breaking down barriers in the fine arts – and is now using a comic strip to do it.

Marshall’s comic strip “Rhythm Master” is part of an exhibit called “Heartland” at the Smart Museum of Art, located on the Hyde Park campus of the University of Chicago.