Pro Bono Project for the Arts

“At the heart of our Bambú installations is a philosophic engineering: Simply put, the invisible architecture of life is created by actions intersecting with conditions or other actions. We all climb through this structure (and contribute to it) as we navigate life.”
Big Bambú creators, artists, and identical twin brothers Mike and Doug Starn
Project Overview

We are proud to provide pro bono assistance to nonprofit arts and cultural organizations that cannot typically afford the legal services that all institutions need to survive and grow. This investment helps our communities thrive and encourages our neighbors to share their stories and preserve their rich histories. Our work includes venue contracting, international touring logistics and finance, property acquisition, and nonprofit incorporation and taxation. We have helped our clients launch numerous 501(c)(3) organizations in our communities and assisted many non-profits with their day-to-day operations, from entity formation, drafting and reviewing contracts, to advising on corporate governance. In supporting the visions of artistic innovators, we hope to connect people from all backgrounds.

Big Bambú

A large Sidley team, including lawyers from the New York, Washington D.C., and Dallas offices, has been working with Mike and Doug Starn — identical twin artists who work on multimedia installation projects and in the media of painting and photography — to form a nonprofit, 501(c)(3) corporation to construct a version of their Big Bambú sculptural installation on the Texas and Mexican sides of the Rio Grande River.

Mike and Doug create temporary sculptures that have been exhibited around the world. Their Big Bambú series has been constructed and installed in various international locations, including on the roof of The Metropolitan Museum of Art, over the canals of Venice, and in the forest of Teshima, Japan. The Big Bambú installation on the banks of the Rio Grande will be the focal point of an outdoor art exhibition and a program of related educational programming.

The Sidley team has worked with the Starns for a number of years exploring issues around the project, securing the real estate on which to construct the project, and forming the corporate entity. This past year, Sidley assisted in obtaining the 501(c)(3) determination from the IRS.

Joffrey Ballet

Sidley represents the nonprofit Joffrey Ballet dance company in a number of immigration and employment matters. Based in Chicago, the Joffrey provides touring performances nationally and internationally, and its artists represent more than 13 countries around the world. Sidley provides the Joffrey with advice that spans many areas, including obtaining performer visas for the Joffrey’s international dancers and artists; providing immigration advice on travel-related questions; and helping them retain a diverse corps de ballet. The Joffrey is considered one of the premier companies performing today, playing a vital role in the dance community as the largest dance company and dance education provider in Chicago and the greater Midwest region.

“The Joffrey Ballet is grateful for Sidley’s incredible support. Immigration the past two years has created a great deal of angst and uncertainty, but Sidley’s steadfast leadership and partnership kept Joffrey strong and our company artists dancing!”

— Bradley Renner, General Manager, The Joffrey Ballet