Located in the Auburn-Gresham community, Renaissance Park is a park location used for passive recreation. Park patrons can relax in this open green space on benches while enjoying the beauty of nature, reading or having a picnic. The centerpiece of Renaissance Park is a sculptural fountain produced by artist Jerzy Kenar. The artwork symbolizes the strength and energy of the residents of the surrounding neighborhood as well as the African American community in general. A pyramidal pile of black granite spheres represents significant African American figures who have made important contributions to music, literature, sports, politics, and social change. The names of eleven significant individuals such as Martin Luther King, Rosa Parks, Harold Washington, and Maya Angelou are incised into the stone. Water flows from the stone, forming a river that represents a spring of positive change. The river trickles towards a tall black granite plinth, symbolically allowing love and positive energy to flow through the entire community.
In 2000, the City of Chicago transferred a derelict site in the Auburn-Gresham neighborhood to the Chicago Park District so that it could be transformed into a new park. TheChicago Park District hired landscape architects Site Design Group and artist Jerzy Kenar to plan the new park. When Mayor Daley dedicated the park two years later, he stated that “The area, which was once ignored and run-down, has begun a new era, a renaissance, of exciting change." RenaissancePark was named in honor of its symbolic and physical importance to the improving-community it serves.