EDITION #12

July 1, 2013 · Print This Article

The scene on Milwaukee Avenue this weekend.

Milwaukee Avenue Arts Festival Roundup

As if Logan Square wasn’t already the best neighborhood in Chicago (sorry haterz), this weekend’s Milwaukee Avenue Arts Festival was the perfect combination of art, craft and deliciousness. The festival had everything: boneless rib sandwiches, hot dogs, cheese burgers, italian sausages, cheese fries, funnel cakes, Wisconsin cheddar curds, corn dogs, chicken strips, cheese sticks, cheese curds, nachos and potato skins. Here are a few of the highlights:

All of the things!

Lisa Lindvay somehow managed to make Doritos gorgeous at one of the SLAC storefront exhibitions

We loved Natalie Krick’s clever use of the dressing rooms in the abandoned clothing store where one of the SLAC exhibitions took place.

WTT? is a longtime GDBD fan, so we were of course delighted to see member Jamie Steele’s work, Lady (2013) at MAAF.

The extremely lovely and extraordinarily talented Nadine Nakanishi at her booth for Sonnenzimmer.

Photo courtesy of J. Herrington

Finding Sustenance at CAC’s Starving Artist

Starving Artist. It’s a charged phrase that elicits reaction from our guts – whether artist, admin or educator – so it was no mistake Chicago Artists Coalition (CAC) chose it as the banner to hold over their annual artist+chef mash-up, raising funding and awareness for its mission to build a sustainable marketplace for artists and creative’s.

Photo courtesy of J. Herrington

Billed as “the experiential artist and culinary event of the year,” CAC pairs a handful of chefs from foodie institutions across the city with esteemed visual artists to inspire one another in creating edible “installations” to be enjoyed by the crowd and new works of art to be auctioned off the night of the event. 2013 saw collaborations between Jordan Martins and Abraham Conlon (Fat Rice), Sabina Ott and Bill Kim (bellyQ), Theaster Gates and Erick Williams (MK), Cody Hudson and Jared Wentworth (Longman & Eagle), and Marissa Lee Benedict with Benjamin Newby (Hennessy Black.) Additionally, Claire Ashley and Andrea Morris transformed CAC’s main gallery into an ethereal, celestial-like space, perfect for the obligatory after-hours dance party.

Photo courtesy of J. Herrington

Now in it’s third consecutive year, Starving Artist has proven to be a perfect concoction of collaboration. By partnering with taste makers (pun intended) throughout the food industry, which has its very own devout following for the artistry of the chefs they love, CAC has found a way to cross-pollinate audiences, capitalizing on shared aesthetics while aiming to develop new audiences for the arts. So far it’s a sweet – and savory – success.

Photo courtesy of J. Herrington

The Weatherman Report

Georges Seurat, A Sunday on La Grande Jatte — 1884, 1884-6 Oil on canvas (81 3/4 x 121 1/4 in.) The Art Institute of Chicago, Helen Birch Bartlett Memorial Collection.

Totally #Trending

Getting your nails did: If you haven’t signed up for an mani appointment at Dzine’s Imperial Nail Salon (my parents’ living room) at the MCA we don’t even know you.

The always fashionable Etta Sandry‘s nail sensation.

Chelsea Culp’s manicure even has chains! I die.

Cardboard: From cats to art fairs, card board is totally trending.

Colin Dickson‘s formal yet functional Donald Judd-esque cardboard cat scratcher in the window of “The Whisker.” We can haz cats while waiting in line?!

Aron Gent’s cardboard palace for Document & Threewall‘s joint booth at the Milwaukee Avenue Arts Festival.

Orange: No further proof needed than the ongoing and extreme popularity of the negroni slushies from Parson’s Chicken & Fish.

Mobile negroni slushie’s at MAAF this weekend. Photo via Parson’s Facebook.

You Spin Me Right Round

Rotating cermaic pot by Chealsea Culp & Ben Foch on view at Rainbo Club in Wicker Park. Is it weird that an art opening at a bar feels more like an art opening than most art openings?

SPOTTED!

LS Alderman, Rey Colón, checking out a photo by Garrett Baumer at one of the SLAC’s pop-up art exhibitions on Milkwaukee.

Robert Chase Heishman‘s work at the MAAF Document/Threewalls booth VS an Urban Outfitter’s backsplash. I think we all know who the winner of this battle is…

Come one, come all!

EDITION #11

June 17, 2013 · Print This Article

Tony Tasset is watching you.

Painting the town red

Everyone knows that going to a museum or a gallery is usually more trouble than it’s worth. What, with all the disapproving glances, heady talk and questionable wine selections. Wouldn’t it be easier just to look at art while you shop? Or during your morning commute to the Loop?

Citizens of Chicago, have no fear. Murals and public commissions are popping up all over (and around) the city. Just this past week the CTA announced the seven artists commissioned to beautify North Side Red Line stations. Lynn Basa (renowned public artist and my former boss) posted this mock-up for her Byzantine glass mosaic that will adorn the Argyle stop on facebook. Basa, who [literally] wrote the book on public art commissions mentioned to me this weekend that she is elated to be creating a public work in her hometown.

Basa mock-up for the Argyle station.

As if the CTA commissions weren’t enough, some of my very favorite Miami artists from Jim Drain to Bhakti Baxter have been descending on the town of Rosemont to complete murals in a new mall scheduled to open sometime this summer. For reasons beyond my comprehension, the ever-relevant New York Times devoted print space to this “ambitious” project. What’s the T? has heard that the mall will also feature an Alvaro Ilizarbe piece that is “his sistine chapel” and worth the trip to the mall-seum. See you there?

Chicago artist, Josh Reames, working on the Drain mural.

Threewall’s ‘Power of Ten’ was a party for way more.

Screw Basel and Venice, the Threewalls 10th anniversary benefit this weekend was on point! The Power of Ten at Salvage One had everything – food, drinks, crazy antiques and baubles, steampunk-style old-timey tin-types, circus performers, drink, dancing, a silhouette cutting artist, music, drinks, and even some art.

Even though we still don’t know where they’re moving (do they even know where they’re moving to?!), here are ten fabulously done-up attendee’s in honor of the power of ’10′:

Threewalls Programming Director, Abby Satinsky with artist and curator, Anthony Romero. Abby’s dress is just killer and La Croix continues to trend.

Auction guest curators and Chicago fashion icons, Ben Foch and Chealsea Culp of New Capital with Threewalls Director Shannon Stratton.

Formerly featured on Who Wore it Better, the daper Daniel Tucker and Anthony Stepter.

Artist Jason Lazurus flanked by up-and-comers Raven Munsell and Jesse Malmed. LOVING the seersucker suit!

Totally Trending

Face paint was definitely a big winner at the ACRE Block Party last Saturday, June 8th.


The Weatherman Report

Mary Heilmann , San Gregorio, 2012 Oil on canvas (15 x 12 inches) Image provided by hyperallergic.

SMALLTIME ARCHIPHILE:

Roberto Clemente Post Office

Consistently referred to as the worse post office in the world, the Roberto Clemente Branch of the USPS in Logan Square is a wonderfully ‘brick’ building, not in material but in shape. Thats not to say it’s shaped like a brick, but the bricks become different shapes. I say this because brick is on display, not for what it wants to be – sorry Lou Kahn – but for what it tries to simulate. It’s like when Neo sees Agent Smith shrouded in binary code – parts to whole, whole to parts, but without the make-up.

Post office exterior.

Usually used as a traditional building material, mostly flat and controlled through joining patterns, bricks do not become cylindrical columns, filleted edges, curves, almost tapestry like frames for tall beautiful window displays of people waiting two hours for a package, like at the RCPO. Opened in 1937, this building threw me for a loop because I dated it later, but the deco interior and amazing mural insice should have been more of an indication.

The mural in all it’s glory.

The changes in the bricks attitude is mad postmodern, but it was done at the mid-stage of American modernism, lending itself to the deco ideas of streamline. That would explain the curvaceous bod on this beauty, but not her brick dress. Beauty might be only skin deep, but when you use rounded bricks to complete a homogenous cladding of a building that could have been expressed in steel or another more plastic material, you’re trying to say something about normal buildings out there, namely ‘who cares what the brick wants to be.’

Located at 2339 N California Ave, Chicago, IL 60647

SLAC studios take hold on Milwaukee Ave

If you live in Logan Square you’ve probably been wondering what happened to that garrish pink bakery on Milwaukee Avenue near the Spaulding Blue Line stop. Unwilling to let it lay dormant, Gwendolyn Zabicki, founder and director of the South Logan Arts Coalition is putting this and other vacant storefronts on Milwaukee Avenue to use. SLAC’s studios will be open to the public with exhibitions featuring a total of 40 artists during the 2013 Milwaukee Avenue Arts Festival, June 28-30th.

What’s the T? caught up with Zabicki and some of the SLAC artists for sneak peek of what SLAC has in store for MAAF:

Matthew Woodward with his work in the bakery turned studio.

Milwaukee Avenue Arts Festival will also feature local favorites and newcomers such as the Trailer Park Proyects, Threewalls, The Comfort Station, Document, Reform Objects. We also heard the food is going to be the bomb.com.

SLAC continued…

Milwaukee Ave Arts Fest flyer at Reform Objects.

Natalie Krick in her SLAC studio.

Zabicki in the studio being occupied by Krick.

Location to Stationers

Summer Dreamin’

Location to Station: Help my ACRE homies fulfill their vision quest to super rad places like Cahokia. The artists are all super talented, and the “perks” for donating are real sweet.

ACRE Kitchen: ACRE does a lot of intangible things for the over 90 artists who visit the residency in Wisconsin each summer, but one of the most substantial and delicious parts of the program is feeding everyone twice a day. Anyone who’s been to ACRE knows the food is awesome, fresh, sustainable, all that jazz and the staff is tireless. Help ACRE help you! Plus it’s tax deductible. Hurry! There’s only a few days left!

EDITION #10

May 28, 2013 · Print This Article

Reading is Fundamental

BREAKING: In a surprising turn of events, books exist in the physical realm. In the interest of your papered pleasure, here is a rundown of some noteworthy and [pretty] new Chicago imprints.

  • RE: things in the lap, by Edmund Chia. This sincere and experimental volume by Peregrine Program proprietor Edmund Chia covers his experience of the last three years of exhibitions through prose, poetry and images from Peregrine artists. Chia’s poetic interpretations are like remembering through someone else’s brain. Sweet cover art by David Salkin. Available here.
  • Psychosexual catalog, ANDREW RAFACZ GALLERY, curated by Scott J. Hunter. Rafacz told the T that this catalog is the first in a series, with forthcoming edition for Wendy White’s solo exhibition in September. The catalogs are part of larger initiative to expand and deepen the galleries programming with longer running exhibitions and events like the catalog release and conversation on May 25th.

    A “real extension of the show” Rafacz said the book is meant to be a “sexy object,” sporting a lux cover, BUTT magazine-esque pink pages and elaborate typography. Designed by Ryan Swanson, Jason Foumberg‘s diagrammatic essay might be Psychosexual’s sexiest piece. Also includes an essay by Hunter and a great read about a Caravaggio work by Elijah Burger. More information on the Psychosexual catalog here.

  • A sneak peak of Foumberg’s essay.
  • Space, Interiors and Exteriors, 1972, Sun Ra + Ayé Aton. A new book with never-before-seen photos by Sun Ra, released by Corbett vs. Dempsey? owning this book will score you about a million cool points. Featuring photographs by Mr. Ra, murals by Aton, an introduction by Glenn Ligon and an essay by John Corbett. It’s pretty much an investment. Availble here.
  • Photo by Clay Hickson.
  • Sunday Thoughts, by Clay Hickson. I love seeing Hickson’s “Sunday Thoughts” on my tumblr stream, so I couldn’t be more excited to have the entire collection in the flesh. Sunday Thoughts was recently featured alongside other local, national and maybe even international artists at Johalla Project‘s Artist Book Collection, curated by Nina Hartmann.

Hartmann with the Artist Book Collection at Johalla Projects.

The Weatherman Report

Roger de La Fresnaye , Landscape with a Village, The Hills Beyond Meulan, 1911 Oil on canvas (72.4 × 59.4 cm) Image provided by Indianapolis Museum of Art

#linkedin

  • New Capital featured on Art Slant. Finally! Someone is paying attention to awesome work in Chicago.
  • An image of Seth Sher and Meg Noe at New Capital from the article by author and photographer, Paul Germanos.
  • Like “Cribs” for artists on the internet. The School of the Art Institute of Chicago’s (and my former classmate), Kate Korroch‘s apartment featured on popular blog, Apartment Therapy.
  • Korroch and her husband, Chad Jewsbury, at their Ravenswood apartment.
  • Oh come on, I know you get your art news from Facebook, too. Click images for stories.
  • Anthony said it best.
  • Gallerista‘s Joshua Herrington asks, ‘girl, what is the T?’
  • Theaster Gates trending even more than normal. Recently my gmail inbox just cannot get enough of Theaster Gates. It keeps going on and on about how Gates has been named the keynote speaker of the One State Together in the Arts conference, and how he inaugrated his new exhibition 13th Ballad at the MCA, or about this well timed interview between him and Elysabeth Alfano. Will my inbox never rest?

Who Wore it Better?

Time Magazine cover and Kate Ruggeri sculpture from 2010. (Stole this from Kate‘s tumblr).


Inspirational art work for the band Black/Black, who performed this weekend at SWAN SONG for LODOS. Art work by Steven Vainberg

EDITION #9

May 13, 2013 · Print This Article

Rose Halpern

TWENDING

  • Headlessness
  • Pointed Shouldews
  • Space Tennis
  • “Inappwopwiate beadwok”
  • Empty suitcases
  • Gas masks
  • Tunics
  • Veils
  • Abstwact bulk
  • Inconvenient pockets
  • Pockets-as-hand-passageways
  • Deconstwucted Camo pattewns
  • Bustles (many of them)
  • Expanding spatial wadius via bulky, geometwically shaped layews
  • Mad Men on sizzuwp
  • Anime
  • Neon yellow, khaki combo

Francisco Gonzalez

Jacqueline Nadolski
  • Man clothes
  • Visible body

Tenley George

Sam Salvo

Special report by twend tracker Caroline Picard.

The Weatherman Report

Gustave Caillebotte, Rue de Paris, temps de pluie, 1877 (oil on canvas, 83.54″ x 108.74″).

SMALLTIME ARCHIPHILE:

The Bachman House

Chicago has had characters – both architects and buildings – throughout it’s development as a place where things get built, regardless of if people want it or not. Bruce Goff, a transplanted Chicagoan, was a character and produced them. Goff was a child prodigy that started practicing architecture at 12-fucking-years-old and was doing weird things before they were cool i.e. Pre-PoMo; hell, pre-WWII.

The Bachman house was completed in 1947 and landmarked in the 1980s. This single-family home sports a straight-up sheet metal façade that’s closer to a shed than a home. The sharp triangulation and peak of the Bachman House roof volume gets bisected by an even more acute triangle, held up by two symmetrical equilateral ones – architects did love drawing with their triangles! The front and center in-your-face nature of this bungalow only gets weirder by placing it within a typical Chicago neighborhood laden with brick 3-flats and masonry walk-ups. Goff’s fortress (many people compare his work to castles) does not embrace local flavor superficially. Instead, it totally engages with Chicago’s, “build first and ask questions later” attitude to architectural culture. Unfortunately, that approach comes with a disclaimer that the Daley’s and Rahm both espouse: “nothing or no one stands in the way of development.” Meaning not even landmark status can save buildings anymore in Chicago.

Maybe they didn’t get the memo that architects are used to projects never getting built, let alone mostly working in virtual reality, so you can kill a building but you can’t kill architecture.

Located at 1244 W. Carmen Ave, Chicago, IL 60640.

.gif of “Sitting Bull” from the NAFM

.gif of “earring” from the NAFM

Native American Fax Machine:

.gif of “Trail of Tears”

Featuring work generated rounds of Harkins’ own game, Native American Fax Machine is on view through May 25th at Happy Collaborationists. If these .gif’s are any indication (which they obviously are), this show is definitely worth checking out. Bonus points for contributing to the landline trend! The instructions for your own round of Native American Fax Machine are included below:

A game played with 6 or more players.
Each player selects a card with a noun.
Each player has 3 minutes to draw the noun.
The players move the drawings clockwise.

Players then have 1 minute to copy the drawing.
Players pass the drawings until they have made the same amount of copies as players.
The last person to draw the noun has to guess the original noun on the card.

Composite of “caribou” from the NAFM

.gif of “caribou” from the NAFM

E-Dogz: Zom­bie Apoc­a­lyp­tic Refuge Center

When the zom­bie apoc­a­lypse goes down, we’ll all have to think on their toes– watch­ing our backs as we hit the roads– escap­ing the rav­en­ous army of undead relent­lessly pur­su­ing our cra­nial tis­sues. The liv­ing will have to eat too and the mobile kitchen of E-Dogz will be a bea­con of nour­ish­ment in these end days. Eric “E-Dog” May has teamed up with Rimas Simaitis to equip the food trailer to travel land and sea, feed­ing the peo­ple in these dyer times. The zom­bie plague actu­ally began gen­er­a­tions ago, con­jured through black magic by Voodoo priests on island nations dur­ing the glory days of the high seas. To honor the zom­bie resis­tance of yore, E-Dogz: Zom­bie Apoc­a­lypse Refuge Cen­ter will host a tiki party to ward off zom­bies and serve up dooms­day cui­sine and cir­cuses. This event may fea­ture, but will not be lim­ited to: Spam nigiri, ento­mophagy (look it up), flam­ing cock­tails, and/or coconut short wave radios.

TODAY!
Eric May & Rimas Simaitis present:
E-Dogz: Zom­bie Apoc­a­lyp­tic Refuge Center
May 13th, 5pm– 7pm
Gallery 400
in response to Halflifers

EDITION #8

April 29, 2013 · Print This Article

Move over, Judy Chicago!

While you were busy rubbing up against undergrads who rock BO like its spring Givenchy at the latest apartment opening, What’s the T? was doing rigorous “research” on how the other half lives. The half that attends a monthly live talk show catered by a guest chef in a West Loop winery.

The April 1st Dinner Party featured actually funny stand-up from Brian Babylon and made me fall in love with Peggy Macnamara. The pork chop was bangin’ and the food was totally worth the price of the ticket alone.

Ted Seymour, resident choreographer at Ballet Chicago, danced the opening performance with Ellen Green at the April 1st Dinner Party.

Unsurprisingly, What’s the T? is particularly star-struck by the inclusion of Jordan, the creator of CandidCandace.com and a social columnist for the Trib at the May 6th installment of the live broadcast event.

Writing gossip and being gossip are usually considered mutual exclusive endeavors, but Candace Jordan has managed to work both sides of the column. Jordan was named playboy bunny of the year in 1976 and currently spends her time covering the juiciest events in town. Michael Jordan’s wedding much?

Brian Babylon being hilarious.

Buy tickets for the May 6th Dinner Party featuring Candace Jordan, Lin Brehmer of WXRT, and Nick Bowling, Associate Director of the Timeline Theatre. Hosted by Elysabeth Alfano at City Winery.

.gif of the week

Peep this outtake from Kris Harzinski & Will Haughery’s May 26th exhibition at ACRE.

Telephone Cords Snap Back

Local fav, Gel Set’s new video for “disconnected” features everyone you’ve ever seen at party and really works the telephone cord trend.

Karthik Pandian’s Rhona Hoffman exhibition has also been trending hard, recently inciting a comment war on New City’s website. The Incomparables Club featured a circle of red telephone cord placed aptly above the desk, which can still be seen in Pandian’s on-going video installation, Reversal in the upstairs gallery.

The Weatherman Report

Georgia O’Keeffe, Yellow Jonquils # 3, 1936 © The Georgia O’Keeffe Foundation/Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York. Photo: Dan Wayne.

SMALLTIME ARCHIPHILE:

Home Away from Home

Gems are few and far between in terms of iconic architecture. Most of the time, our cities are made up of small insignificant cumulative buildings occupying neighborhoods and defining local character. But this building in Lakeview doesn’t HAVE character; it IS a character, an odd-one-out for that matter.

This polarized 3-flat near the EL on Sheffield is shaped by typical Chicago lot restrictions, but not by local vernacular practices, like red bricks or Chicago Windows. This residence looks like it should be in South Beach, not North Lakeview – a conglomerate of White and Grey masonry blocks in alternating horizontal lines; copious amounts of Miami Vice Glass brick; 90s laser-beam graphics on the long elevation; ‘hi-tech’ Kubrick bubble windows; a diagonally cut front entrance; and fucking shark fins on the parapet roof profile. I can’t believe I just described a building like this AND it’s real. It’s odd placement near a major transit point and its non-Chicago skin make it stand out, but not in the way that suggests it got lost in the wrong neighborhood. It’s as if this building is doing it’s own thing and feeling really comfortable, like dancing with it’s eyes closed and pretending no one’s watching.

As an object, this looker is not a place you can hang at, since it’s a private residence. Maybe you can make friends with the inhabitants of this time-and-place machine. Imagine hanging on the asymmetrical rear patio decks on a warm summer night, sipping on your cold fruity drink – if you get blasted enough, it might feel like Miami Beach with your eyes closed…but then the train will pass by and you’ll realize you’re in a fucking spaceship.

Grade A diamond in the rough.

Address: FIND IT YOURSELF!

What the T?!

What happened to G.R. N’Namdi Gallery?