Chance the Rapper exhibit showcases psychedelic journey, 10-year anniversary of ‘Acid Rap’

“The Acid Rap Experience” installation at the WNDR Museum features kaleidoscopic lights, the rapper’s music and video footage that visitors can interact with.

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Chance the Rapper mingles with supporters at the WNDR Museum during the launch of “The Acid Rap Experience,” celebrating the mixtape’s 10th anniversary, Wednesday night at the West Loop museum.

Chance the Rapper mingles with supporters at the WNDR Museum during the launch of “The Acid Rap Experience,” celebrating the mixtape’s 10th anniversary, Wednesday night at the West Loop museum.

Ashlee Rezin/Sun-Times

When Akisha Lockhart traveled to Los Angeles to visit a friend about a decade ago, the Hyde Park resident recalls driving through the city’s streets and listening to Chance the Rapper’s seminal mixtape “Acid Rap” for the first time.

A harmonious blend of experience and sound unfolded, she recalled, crafting an unforgettable soundtrack for her first visit to the City of Angels. From that moment forward, she said she fell in love with the singer and the mixtape.

“When I heard the album while riding down the streets of L.A., I felt like I had a piece of Chicago with me,” Lockhart said.

Lockhart, donning a black-and-white hat with the rapper’s iconic “3” logo, was one of many guests present on Wednesday’s opening night of the WNDR Museum’s “The Acid Rap Experience,” an immersive Chance the Rapper-themed art experience featuring kaleidoscopic lights, the rapper’s music and video footage that’s taking over the museum in celebration of the 10-year anniversary of the mixtape.

The museum, at 1130 W. Monroe, transformed 14 of its most popular interactive exhibits into an “Acid Rap” oasis full of sensory thrills that provide everyone from superfans to those who’ve only heard a few songs with a connection to the mixtape.

Akisha Lockhart, of Hyde Park, walks through the “WNDR Light Floor” exhibit during the launch of “The Acid Rap Experience,” celebrating the mixtape’s 10th anniversary, Wednesday night at the WNDR Museum in the West Loop.

Akisha Lockhart, of Hyde Park, walks through the “WNDR Light Floor” exhibit during the launch of “The Acid Rap Experience,” celebrating the mixtape’s 10th anniversary, Wednesday night at the WNDR Museum in the West Loop.

Ashlee Rezin/Sun-Times

David Allen, the WNDR Museum’s chief creative officer, said the entire experience came together in about a month after Chance’s team approached the museum about the collaboration.

“I hope people gain a reinvigoration of [“Acid Rap”] or the time we spent alone or with friends listening to Chance and being in the city,” Allen said.

Also on Wednesday, the museum opened up The Chance Store, a pop-up shop featuring a limited supply of exclusive merchandise, including the rapper’s “3” hats in the mixtape’s pink and purple colorways, ashtrays with the “Acid Rap” logo and even a Chance-inspired Ben and Jerry’s ice cream.

The store will be open 10 a.m. to 8 p.m daily through Sunday.

Lyndsey Clark, 27, visited the pop-up store with her boyfriend, Elijah Gelfand, on Wednesday and bought a limited-edition “Acid Rap” vinyl. She said the mixtape is very nostalgic and indicative of her teen years.

“I just remember blasting it every single day in high school,” Clark said. “I can’t believe it’s been 10 years.”

Alongside the pop-up exhibits and store, the WNDR Museum on Friday will give visitors the opportunity to purchase tickets to the sold-out “Acid Rap” anniversary show Saturday night at the United Center.

Visitors shop for Chance the Rapper merchandise in “The Chance Store” at the WNDR Museum during the launch of “The Acid Rap Experience,” celebrating the album’s 10th anniversary, Wednesday at the West Loop museum.

A wide variety of “Acid Rap” and other Chance the Rapper merchandise is available at a new pop-up at the WNDR Museum.

Ashlee Rezin/Sun-Times

Lyndsey Clark and Elijah Gelfand, both 27 and live in River North, shop for Chance the Rapper merchandise in “The Chance Store” at the WNDR Museum during the launch of “The Acid Rap Experience,” celebrating the album’s 10th anniversary, Wednesday night at the West Loop museum.

Lyndsey Clark and Elijah Gelfand shop for Chance the Rapper merchandise in The Chance Store pop-up at the WNDR Museum.

Ashlee Rezin/Sun-Times

It was a busy day for Chance, who earlier in the evening made an appearance at the Apple store on Michigan Avenue, where he discussed his career and the making of the mixtape.

Chance, who grew up in West Chatham on the South Side, released “Acid Rap” in 2013 when he was 20. The mixtape focuses on his transition to life after high school, not attending college and exploring the psychedelic drug LSD, also known as acid, he told HipHopDX in 2013.

Visitors enjoy a WNDR Museum exhibit during the launch of “The Acid Rap Experience” and “The Chance Store,” celebrating the album’s 10th anniversary, at the West Loop museum.

Visitors enjoy the “WNDR Light Floor” exhibit during the launch of “The Acid Rap Experience” celebrating the 10th anniversary of Chance the Rapper’s mixtape.

Ashlee Rezin/Sun-Times

“[There] was a lot of acid involved in ‘Acid Rap,’” he said in a 2013 interview with MTV News. “I mean, it wasn’t too much. I’d say it was about 30 to 40 percent acid.”

With a lineup of collaborators that includes Vic Mensa, Childish Gambino, Twista, BJ The Chicago Kid and more, Rolling Stone in 2013 set “Acid Rap” at the top of its list of the best mixtapes of the year.

Visitors enter the WNDR Museum for the launch of “The Acid Rap Experience” and “The Chance Store,” Wednesday night in the West Loop.

The WNDR Museum in the Loop is transformed into “The Acid Rap” experience.

Ashlee Rezin/Sun-Times

“I want to thank everybody from 10 years ago who softened their heart and allowed me in,” Chance said during remarks at the museum, acknowledging fans, artists and collaborators.

In the 10 years since the mixtape has released, Chance said he’s learned that it’s important to “know when to work and when to have fun.”

Admission ($22-$32) to “The Acid Rap Experience” is included WNDR Museum Chicago tickets purchased Aug. 17-20. Visit wndrchicago.com for more information and to purchase tickets in advance (required).

Visitors enjoy the “TERRES(TRI)AL” exhibit during the launch of “The Acid Rap Experience,” celebrating the mixtape’s 10th anniversary, Wednesday night at the WNDR Museum in the West Loop.

Visitors look at the “TERRES(TRI)AL” exhibit during the launch of “The Acid Rap Experience,” celebrating the mixtape’s 10th anniversary, Wednesday night at the WNDR Museum in the West Loop.

Ashlee Rezin/Sun-Times

Visitors enjoy a WNDR Museum exhibit during the launch of “The Acid Rap Experience” and “The Chance Store,” Wednesday night at the West Loop museum.

Visitors enjoy the “Flip Disc (Particles 45)” exhibit during the launch of “The Acid Rap Experience” and “The Chance Store,” Wednesday night at the WNDR Museum in the West Loop.

Ashlee Rezin/Sun-Times

Visitors interact with the “Masterpiece” exhibit during the launch of “The Acid Rap Experience” at the WNDR museum.

Visitors interact with the “Masterpiece” exhibit during the launch of “The Acid Rap Experience” at the WNDR museum.

Ashlee Rezin/Sun-Times

Visitors enjoy a WNDR Museum exhibit during the launch of “The Acid Rap Experience,” celebrating the album’s 10th anniversary, Wednesday at the West Loop museum.

Visitors experience the sights and sounds of the “Lake Shore Drive (LSD)” exhibit during “The Acid Rap Experience” at the WNDR museum on Wednesday night.

Ashlee Rezin/Sun-Times

Chance the Rapper mingles with supporters at the WNDR Museum during the launch of “The Acid Rap Experience,” celebrating the mixtape’s 10th anniversary, Wednesday night at the West Loop museum.

Chance the Rapper mingles with supporters at the WNDR Museum during the launch of “The Acid Rap Experience,” celebrating the mixtape’s 10th anniversary, Wednesday night at the West Loop museum.

Ashlee Rezin/Sun-Times

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