Around Town: Pecha Kucha Night

by New Idiom


Pecha Kucha, a show-and-tell for creatives, is making its second appearance in Chicago on Tuesday, September 25th. The idea here is to gather creative people and give them a venue to easily and informally share their work. Started in 2003 by Tokyo-based architects Astrid Klein and Mark Dytham, Pecha Kucha Nights have spread to over 80 cities around the world.

In case you’re wondering, the name Pecha Kucha comes from the Japanese term for the sound of conversation, or chit-chat. The format is simple. Using a slide show, selected presenters have exactly 6 minutes and 40 seconds to share their ideas. This breaks down to 20 slides at 20 seconds per slide. Every presenter gets a fair share of time, the presentations are kept short, and there is a wide variety of subject matter. The audience never knows what to expect, and that’s part of the fun.

All the presenters — designers, architects, writers, performance artists, you name it — for each event are local. This provides a great opportunity to see what is going on in creative fields in Chicago. It may inspire and lead to a new idea, stimulate collaboration on a new project, or just be a fun way to enjoy a drink with interesting people.

Although the presenters for this round of Pecha Kucha have been decided, presenting at a future event could be a way to share what we are working on at ID with the community. It’s also interesting to think about how this idea could be used at ID. If projects were periodically presented in the 20x20 format it could allow a larger audience to not only see them, but also provide feedback. The informal format wouldn’t require too much time for either the presenter or the audience and would help spread ideas around ID.

The first Chicago Pecha Kucha had over 200 people in attendance, so it’s a good idea to get tickets in advance. Tickets can be purchased at

8 pm, Tuesday, September 25th
Martyrs’ Restaurant and Pub, 3855 N. Lincoln Ave.