Activist Art, Architecture, Design, Galleries & Museums, Hyde Park, Installation, Media & Genres, Multimedia, Photography, Prints, Sculpture, Video
Melanie Smith. “Fordlandia ,” 2014. Video still.
Utopias have vexed the art world of late. To name but one example: the first Summer Forum residency recently took place in New Harmony, a site of failed utopian living in Indiana. Meanwhile the critical currents of queer pessimism have forcefully militated against utopian longing, exemplified in the anti-futurity espoused by Lee Edelman. Utopias are dangerous and dreamy. Alluring and exclusionary. Read the rest of this entry »
Activist Art, Collage, Digital Art, Evanston, Galleries & Museums, Hyde Park, Installation, Multimedia, Painting, Performance, Video
“GERMONEY” banner at the German Pavilion, 56th Venice Biennale./Photo: Hito Steyerl
By Elliot J. Reichert
If I were not dreading what comes next, I would be happy for this year to be over. Read the rest of this entry »
Design, Drawings, Galleries & Museums, Installation, Media & Genres, Multimedia, Painting, Sculpture, Textiles, Video, West Loop, West Town
Tony Tasset. “Cup (2),” 2013. Cast bronze and paint, 4 x 4 x 4.5 inches.
Jessica Stockholder’s solo show on the first floor of Kavi Gupta’s Washington Boulevard location features a new body of work which includes her “Assists,” a set of sculpted pieces that might hold up other art. In that show, Tony Tasset’s “Cup,” a cast bronze imitation of Styrofoam, makes a cameo appearance resting on one of them.
Tasset’s work is a stray object from “ASSISTED,” an insightful show occupying the gallery’s second floor that mingles Stockholder’s work with representative examples from artists who have inspired (“assisted”) her. Read the rest of this entry »
Kendell Carter. “WE,” 2012-2015. Bronze-plated shoes, aluminum dog tags, laminate shelves, installation dimensions variable. /Photo: “on the wall” at Monique Meloche.
The effective shut down of Chicago’s Magnificent Mile on Black Friday should be remembered as one of the city’s most conceptually beautiful protest actions. It was a recapitulation of the true forces which govern society, a recognition of the almighty greenback. The protestors cut the city’s jugular, drawing across Michigan Avenue like a righteous blade, lucre pooled in the pockets as blood, and for a frightening and glorious moment the commercial heart of Chicago stopped beating, its rhythms ceded to those of the marchers. Read the rest of this entry »
Montgomery Perry Smith. Installation view at Roots & Culture.
Walking into the gallery, visitors first encounter the project room, a small space to the left past the entrance. It is here that the work of O’Neill and Smith are most cohesive. Read the rest of this entry »
Larassa Kabel. “Scatter,” 2015. Fleece blanket, 60 x 80 inches.
This is the rare exhibition of photorealist drawing that requires explanatory text. Without it, the pieces do not appear to be drawings at all. Usually, an artist’s joy in image-making cannot help but emerge in line, tone and design. But surprisingly, not here, and absent any explanation, the partial portraits of young women are annoying. Why have their mouths been cropped off? So much identity and self-expression have been concealed. Read the rest of this entry »
Laura Owens. Installation view at Soccer Club Club, Drag City
Recently shortlisted for the prestigious Hugo Boss Prize, Los Angeles-based artist Laura Owens debuts a new body of paintings, sculpture and ceramics at Soccer Club Club, the unlikely exhibition space of Drag City, a West Side independent music label. A prolific painter, Chicagoans might recall her mammoth 168-inch-by-132-inch work “Untitled,” a fixture of the Museum of Contemporary Art’s permanent collection. In her painting, Owens consistently deploys a range of tropes including grids, thick hovering lines that double as brushstrokes, gratuitous drop shadows and Peanuts-like cartoon characters wielding tennis racquets. Read the rest of this entry »
Matt Siber. “Lighted Shelter,” 2015. Aluminum, plexiglas and fluorescent lights.
The subject of “Idol Structures” is the infrastructure of signs. Not the term in linguistics that defines the marriage of signifier and signified, but actual signs—billboards and roadside advertisements. Siber is interested in the configurations of steel, neon and vinyl that comprise signs but not in the messages they convey: think Mark di Suvero rather than William Eggleston. Read the rest of this entry »
Jacob Hashimoto. “The Scale of Worlds,” 2015. Wood, acrylic, bamboo, paper, and Dacron, 54 x 47 x 8 inches/Photo: RCH l EKH
“The Scale of Worlds” typifies Jacob Hashimoto’s “kite” works. Vertical layers of “kites”—multi-sized, circular-shaped pieces made of paper and bamboo—are threaded together and suspended between two rows of pegs, filling a square space on the wall. From afar, the “kites” resemble a patriotic-colored target. Nearing the piece reveals a contained, visual dance of individually painted and decorated circles. Read the rest of this entry »
Karsten Lund. “Distal Zone,” installation view at the Franklin, 2015.
Hannah Hoch once said that “[t]he process of remounting, cutting up, sticking down, activating—that is to say, alienating—took hold in all different forms of art.” The technique of combining and reshaping media spans music, literature, poetry and quite particularly, collage. Read the rest of this entry »