I had no intention of reviewing The Guerrilla Girls’ new catalog Not Ready to Make Nice: In the Artworld and Beyond. I mean it’s such a slim volume and I figured I knew everything there was to know about The Guerrilla Girls. Besides, I had practically emptied the library of the art books from the “New” section. Still, when I got home, put those big hardcover art books on the coffee table, it was the little Guerrilla Girls book that I brought to bed with me that night.
Not Ready to Make Nice is a straightforward catalog from the Columbia College A+D Gallery where the Guerrilla Girls were artists in residence this spring. (Bad at Sports is currently in residence, so stop on by.) The body of this 36-page book is a retrospective of the Guerrilla Girls’ last ten years. What I found surprising, sadly surprising, is that it seems the inclusion of women and people of color in our major institutions hasn’t improved much since they started. One of the most illuminating pieces is Chicago Museums: Time for Gender Reassignment! The facts in this work state “even the solo shows at the MCA since 2010 have been 80 percent male.” When I read that, I thought, Wow, that’s way more than I expected. Then my heart sank a little. Really, twenty percent? Remember that line from Rocky Horror where Magenta says to Frank, “I ask for nothing, Master,” and he responds, “and you shall receive it, in abundance.” Yeah, just like that.
The catalog also contains three contextualizing essays and a forward by Jane M. Saks, the executive director of the Ellen Stone Belic Institute for the Study of Women and Gender in the Arts and Media at Columbia College. The first essay by Neysa Page-Lieberman gives a succinct overview of the history of the Guerrilla Girls. The second essay by Joanna Gardner-Huggett considers the Guerrilla Girls through the lens of the feminist movement. Lastly, the catalog closes with an essay by Kymberly N. Pinder that places the Guerrilla Girls within context of ’80s-era culture jamming and street art. Taken together, Not Ready to Make nice is a tidy overview of the Guerrilla Girls’ career and their influence on contemporary arts culture.
This last paragraph is where I usually talk about how much the book costs and where you can buy it. I got mine at the library, which seems like a good place to get a book. But when I started looking for purchase information, I couldn’t find any. It seems the only reasonable way to come by this catalog is to check it out or read it for free online. I love this idea. Catalogs can be crazy expensive and hard to come by, so the idea of posting it for free seems both intellectually and financially respectful. Go ahead, read this book. It’s interesting and it won’t cost you a thing.
Bad at Sports would like to thank the Chicago Reader and its readers for naming us Chicago’s best Visual Art Blog in their survey this year!
You can find the list here…
This week: Ken Fandell and Christy Matson! Introduced by Duncan and Hologram Richard.
This week Bad at Sports started a residency at the A+D Gallery (618 South Wabash, Chicago) at Columbia College. We have many plans for what will be done in the space and how it will be done, but how it evolves depends on all of us and you.
In the space we will be varying our activities between meetings, live interviews, live recordings, Ping Pong (Wii and probably Foosball,) working on a couple of sound pieces, skateboarding, blogging, watching Game of Thrones, and other such nonsense. Watch our twitter feed for who we are interviewing, when, and what fun stuff we are doing on our Saturdays (gallery tours, live Art21 tapings, skate posse meet ups to skate Dan Peterman’s skate park, and some other fun stuff) We will have the following folks in for live interviews: Catherine Sullivan, Steve Reinke, Jason Salavon, Jessica Stockholder, Joe Meno, Dan Tucker and more…
YOU ARE WELCOME ANY TIME!
We ask that you not interrupt tapings but we are happy to talk to you or play pong anytime we are not on mic.
What you missed this week…
Kate and Duncan started work on a two channel version of the piece we are working on. This time we were shaping a conversation between Nato Thompson and Mary Jane Jacob, which we will scale up over the next two weeks to include Mark Dion, Pablo Helguera, and Liam Gillick.
We interviewed Ken Fandell and Christy Matson and ran a small Ping Pong tournament on Thursday night (the gallery is open to 8pm on Thursdays) with a few people who turned up.
Here are some photos of these weeks progress. We can’t wait to see you!
Curated by Nick Lalla, with work by Lauren Elder, Brian Khek, Andre Lenox, Evan Lenox, Micah Schippa, and ft. Drew Olivio.
Robert Bills Contemporary is located at 222 N. Desplaines. Reception Friday 6-9pm.
Performance by Katsura Kan, Adam Rose, Sara Zalek, and Joseph Ravens.
DEFIBRILLATOR is located at 1136 N Milwaukee Ave. Performance Saturday beginning at 8pm. $10.
Work by Matthew Hoffman.
Beauty and Brawn Art Gallery and Think Space is located at 3501 W. Fullerton Ave. Reception Saturday 6-9pm.
Work by Cole Robertson, Elina Malkin, Elisa “Pooper” Harkins, Heaven Gallery, and Marvin Astorga + Virginia Aberle.
Heaven Gallery is located at 1550 N Milwaukee Ave. Reception Friday from 7-11pm.
Work by Noelle Allen.
Carrie Secrist Gallery is located at 835 W. Washington. Reception Saturday 4-7pm.