Carlos Flores (b. 1992 Guadalajara, Mexico) is an emerging and uncategorized artist and curator based in Archer Heights and Little Village. He received his BFA from UIC in 2016. His work is informed by his experiences as a queer Latinx immigrant on the West Side of Chicago and brings viewers face to face with issues of environmental racism, displacement, gender, and race. He is currently focused on dismantling predatory practices by real estate investors targeting vulnerable populations in Little Village. He is also actively involved in makerspaces across the city and consulting to launch a startup that would be both a social enterprise and a critical artwork to take on displacement.

In addition to being an artist, Carlos is the Programs Manager at Chicago Art Department, a two staff community art center in Pilsen that he has co-led for the past 4 years. CAD offers residencies for twenty civically-minded artists and over 100+ free programs and exhibitions to the community annually. Leading programming and the larger organization has morphed into an extension of his studio practice. Carlos is very passionate about cultivating communities and artists to look at our city and country with a critical eye.

Separate from the arts but still in the realm of creative labor, Carlos is a life-long gardener and recently launched a small scale urban flower farm in Archer Heights called Rocio Flower Farm. The micro farm, which runs out of his home, was inaugurated in the spring of 2022 and aims to be a form of ecological protest. Rocio Flower Farms grows primarily native plants and perennials from the Great Lakes Region that are combined with “weeds” collected from the industrial corridors of the city to create unique statement pieces with an environmental message.


2019 –     

Visual Arts Certificate Program, University of Chicago Graham School

2016 –  

Bachelor of Fine Arts in Studio Arts, University of Illinois at Chicago

Residencies / Fellowships 

2017 –               

Ox-Bow School of Art Fall Residency, Saugatuck, MI

The Center Program; Hyde Park Art Center, Chicago, IL 

2016 –                 

Luminarts Visual Arts Fellow, Chicago, IL

LAUNCH Invitational Residency, Chicago Artists Coalition

Achievements / Awards  

2021 – 

Actos de Confianza, National Association of Latino Arts and Cultures, United States

2020 – 

QTIBIPOC Artist Microgrant, FTP, Chicago, IL

Spark Grant, Chicago Artists Coalition, Chicago, IL


Full Scholarship, The Center Program, Hyde Park Art Center

Fall Artists' Residency Stipend Award, Ox-Bow, Saugatuck, MI       

2016 – 2017 

Education Advisory Group member for the Chicago Artists Coalition

Luminarts Fellowship Award, Luminarts Foundation, Chicago IL

2016 – 

UIC Faculty Award for Art, School of Art and Art History, University of Illinois at Chicago 

Talent Tuition Award, School of Art and Art History, University of Illinois at Chicago

2015 –          

Talent Tuition Award, School of Art and Art History, University of Illinois at Chicago

Exhibitions / Artist Talks 

2021 – 

TBD, Roots and Culture Contemporary Art Center, Chicago IL  *Forthcoming*

2020 – 

Artist Run Chicago, Hyde Park Art Center, Chicago IL

Street Canvas, We’ll Figure It Out,  Chicago Art Department, Chicago IL

2019 –

Made In the Fab Lab, Link, Polsky Exchange, Chicago IL

Post Practice,  Chicago Art Department, Chicago IL

Solo Exhibition, Chicago Art Department, Chicago IL

2017 – 

Front & Center, Hyde Park Art Center, Chicago, IL

2016 –                

Project Zero Waste, Hostel Earphoria, Chicago, IL

Villarte, 11th annual Arts Festival, Chicago, IL

Luminarts Visual Arts Competition Exhibition, Union League Club of Chicago

As Little Defined As Anything Else, University of Illinois at Chicago

2014 –                  

Introspection: Anatomy of the Interior, 5th Floor Gallery, University of Illinois at Chicago

Using Format