As Sarah Hadley’s photographs would have it, Venice, Italy is timeless, a city of winding streets and water where people hang their wash, walk through narrow passageways and are engulfed in Renaissance architecture. A realistic view of the city today would address how it is struggling to avoid sinking into the muck and has adopted some trappings of a theme park, but Hadley is a romantic dreamer, attached to the imperial city of long ago that bridged Europe and the Middle East. It is to Hadley’s credit that she is able to bring the old Venice back by presenting sepia-toned images shot on foggy days that isolate their subjects and place them in an ethereal atmosphere that makes us believe that we have been suspended in the past. In her most moving and bold shot, Hadley captures customers at a night market who are illuminated by flashing white light as they dissolve into unity with their surroundings. (Michael Weinstein)
Through July 24 at Illinois Institute of Art Gallery, 180 N. Wabash. (312)280-3500.