Chicago Art in Pictures: January 2013

February 18, 2013 · Print This Article

A graphic, editorial overview of art, artists, and visual art events, found in and around Chicago over the course of the preceding month. All artwork copyright original artists; all photography copyright Paul Germanos.


Thelonious Elliot and Wray Morgan Herbert-King @ ACRE Projects

Thelonious Elliot and Wray Morgan Herbert-King @ ACRE Projects

Thelonious Elliot and Wray Morgan Herbert-King @ ACRE Projects

Above: Theo Elliot at left; Morgan Herbert-King at right; opening night at ACRE Projects.

Thelonious Elliot and Wray Morgan Herbert-King
“Moving a Hole”
January 20 – February 4
ACRE Projects
1913 W. 17th St.
Chicago, IL 60608
http://www.acreresidency.org/


Dmitry Samarov @ Chicago Public Library

Dmitry Samarov @ Chicago Public Library

Above: “Algren” 2012

Dmitry Samarov @ Chicago Public Library

Above: “Morandi” 2011, top; “Entrapment” 2012, bottom.

Dmitry Samarov
“Bookshelf Paintings”
January 11 – March 1, 2013
Harold Washington Library Center
400 S. State St.
Chicago, IL 60605
http://www.dmitrysamarov.com/


Goshka Macuga @ Smart Museum of Art

Goshka Macuga @ Smart Museum of Art

Goshka Macuga @ Smart Museum of Art

Above: Exhibition closing and curator talk (MCA curator Dieter Roelstraete, left, and Smart curator Stephanie Smith, right) January 13, 2013

Goshka Macuga
“Of what is, that it is; of what is not, that it is not,” panel 2
(wool tapestry from photo collage, approx. 11 x 38 feet, half of diptych)
December 13, 2012 – January 13, 2013
Smart Museum of Art (lobby)
5550 S. Greenwood Ave.
Chicago, IL 60637
http://smartmuseum.uchicago.edu/


Robert Chase Heishman @ Roots & Culture

Robert Chase Heishman @ Roots & Culture

Above: Robert Chase Heishman with artwork at Roots & Culture, opening night.

Robert Chase Heishman
“Fractal Semblance”
January 18 – February 16, 2013
Roots & Culture
1034 N. Milwaukee Ave.
Chicago, IL
Curated by Eric May, Stephanie Cristello and Allison Glenn
Artwork by Robert Chase Heishman, Jessica Labatte, Alistair Matthews, and Liz Nielsen
http://www.rootsandculturecac.org/


R. H. Quaytman @ The Renaissance Society

R. H. Quaytman @ The Renaissance Society

R. H. Quaytman @ The Renaissance Society

Above: Peeking inside the piece “Public Space/Two Audiences”

R. H. Quaytman
“Passing Through The Opposite of What It Approaches, Chapter 25″
January 6 – February 17, 2013
The Renaissance Society
5811 S. Ellis Avenue
Bergman Gallery, Cobb Hall 418
Chicago, Illinois 60637
http://www.renaissancesociety.org/


Deborah Baker @ Packer Gallery

Deborah Baker @ Packer

Deborah Baker @ Packer

Above: Cotton on linen, embroidery, under glass, framed.

Deborah Baker
“Zodiac”
January 11 – February 16
Packer Schopf Gallery
942 W. Lake St.
Chicago, IL 60607
http://www.packergallery.com/


Sarah Mendelsohn @ The Plaines Project

Sarah Mendelsohn @ The Plaines Project

Above: Sarah Mendelsohn with her artwork at The Plaines Project, opening night.

Sarah Mendelsohn
“Stretches Topless”
January 19 – February 8, 2013
The Plaines Project
1822 S. Desplaines St.
Chicago, IL
http://plainesproject.wordpress.com/


Tom Torluemke @ Hyde Park Art Center

Tom Torluemke @ Hyde Park Art Center

Above: Tom Torluemke with his horrific vision of environmental degradation, shot at the opening reception.

Tom Torluemke
“Fearsome Fable – Tolerable Truth”
January 20, 2013 – April 28, 2013
Gallery 4
Hyde Park Art Center
5020 S. Cornell Ave.
Chicago, IL 60615
http://www.hydeparkart.org/


Teruko Nimura @ Roxaboxen Exhibitions / ACRE Projects

Teruko Nimura @ Roxaboxen Exhibitions

Above: Hummingbird in flight, floral origami aim, installation at Roxaboxen.

Teruko Nimura
“Potentialities,” a two-person show with Milcah Bassel
January 20 – February 1, 2013
Roxaboxen Exhibitions / ACRE Projects
2130 W. 21st St.
Chicago, IL 60608
http://www.terukonimura.net/


Scott Hocking @ Chicago Artists’ Coalition

Scott Hocking @ Chicago Artists’ Coalition

Above: Scott Hocking with artwork at opening reception for “EXCHANGE: Chicago-Detroit”

“EXCHANGE: Chicago-Detroit”

CHICAGO: Chicago Artists’ Coalition, Chicago IL
January 11 – 31, 2013
DETROIT: Cave Gallery and Public Pool, Detroit, MI
February 23 – March 16, 2013

Chicago Artists’ Coalition,
217 N. Carpenter Street,
Chicago IL 60607
http://chicagoartistscoalition.org/


Edie Fake @ Thomas Robertello

Edie Fake @ Thomas Robertello

Above: Edie Fake at opening reception; artwork in background.

Edie Fake
“Memory Palaces”
January 4 – February 16, 2013
Thomas Robertello Gallery
27 N. Morgan St.
Chicago, IL 60607
http://www.thomasrobertello.com/


Lauren Payne and Erin Washington @ Johalla Projects / ACRE Projects

Lauren Payne and Erin Washington @ Johalla Projects / ACRE Projects

Above: Lauren Payne and Erin Washington’s collaborative installation, opening night.

Jenny Kendler with Lauren Payne @ Johalla Projects / ACRE Projects

Above: Jenny Kendler (ACRE Board of Directors) left; Lauren Payne, right; opening night.

Lauren Payne and Erin Washington
“As Above So Below”
January 25 – 31, 2013
Johalla Projects / ACRE Projects
1821 W Hubbard, Suite 209
Chicago 60622
http://www.johallaprojects.com/


Harvey Moon @ Hauser Gallery

Harvey Moon @ Hauser Gallery

Above: Harvey Moon with “drawing machine” installed in gallery, opening night.

Harvey Moon
“Transpported Wind”
January 25 – March 22, 2013
Hauser Gallery
230 W. Superior St.
Chicago, IL
http://www.unanything.com/


Paul Germanos: Born November 30, 1967, Cook County, Illinois. Immigrant grandparents, NYC. High school cross country numerals and track letter. Certified by the State of Illinois as a peace officer. Licensed by the City of Chicago as a taxi driver. Attended the School of the Art Institute 1987-1989. Studied the history of political philosophy with the students of Leo Strauss from 2000-2005. Phi Theta Kappa and Phi Kappa Phi. Motorcyclist.




Edie Fake’s Ecstatic Afterlives

January 11, 2013 · Print This Article

Edie Fake, Gateway (for Mark Aguhar) (Palace Door - calloutqueen), ballpoint pen, ink and gouache on paper, 2012

Edie Fake, Gateway (for Mark Aguhar) (Palace Door – calloutqueen), ballpoint pen, ink and gouache on paper, 2012

On view currently at Chicago’s Thomas Robertello Gallery are 15 pen, ink, and gouache drawings on paper by local artist, illustrator, and author of the Gaylord Phoenix volume of comics, Edie Fake. Titled ‘Memory Palaces,’ the exhibition is a stunning showcase of Fake’s exceptional, and exceptionally idiosyncratic, formal skills in composition, pattern-design, and color, as well as a moving meditation on loss. Specifically, Fake pays tribute to the passing of five friends, colleagues, activists, and artists (Mark Aguhar, Nick Djandji, Dara Greenwald, Flo McGarrell, and Dylan Williams) in a series of drawings titled Gateway, and to ten real or imagined spaces of queer congregation no longer, or never, existent.

Edie Fake, JANE, ballpoint pen, ink and gouache on paper, 2012

Edie Fake, JANE, ballpoint pen, ink and gouache on paper, 2012

Put simply: depicted are places Fake, or the rest of us, may never go. They are hopeful spaces vividly imagined by those living in a contemporary urban environment largely ravaged and rid of countercultural nightlife by neoliberal vice and zoning laws, class-targeted antidrug policies, and corporate gentrification efforts throughout the late 20th century. As such, the collection of building facades Fake depicts – described as a neighborhood – can only be psychically located between utopian fantasy and interpretive research. Doing so foregrounds how the imagination and it’s shadow, desire, propels individual or collective searches for heritage, lineage, and belonging. What might be made possible for someone whose very personhood and politics teeters on the brink of unviability by the realization that, yes, La Mere Vipere (a burned down gay/punk venue in the now-gentrified Boystown), Killer Dyke (a radical lesbian periodical), and JANE (a clandestine feminist-led abortion service) did, indeed, exist here in the 1970s? Comprehension of these disappeared, criminalized spaces and services entails not simply an intellectual recognition, but something much more sensorial and perhaps even spiritual when translated through the prismatic hallucinations offered by Fake.

Edie Fake, The Snake Pit, ballpoint pen, ink and gouache on paper, 2012

Edie Fake, The Snake Pit, ballpoint pen, ink and gouache on paper, 2012

The flatness of the paper Fake has drawn upon is only a format, as his palette of offbeat hyper-colors and remarkable geometric drawing skills translates a deeper, pulsating dimensionality, like the embedded optic phenomena of a Magic Eye poster and a horror vacui painting. A handful of the places recreated here include dance venues, sex-clubs, and art spaces, all of which Fake has foregone a faithful architectural re-approximation of in favor of getting at something much more enigmatic – the mind-altering life practices they facilitated. Representing nightlife from psychedelia through disco and punk, up to rave, Fake renders his spaces with the fluorescent sensibilities and colors of escape developed via dance-floors and acid-trips. Neon hues that should clash, but somehow don’t, cohere in vibrant mosaic facades Fake has lent to 80s voguing-hub Club LaRay and former host of 70s gay anarchy nights The Snake Pit. Seeming inspired by the hypnotic, transportive potential of repetition and detail in geometric art, Fake’s designs are infused with a mystical content in the style of Islamic tile work or Huichol yarn and bead art.

Edie Fake, Gateway (for Dara Greenwald), ballpoint pen, ink and gouache on paper, 2012

Edie Fake, Gateway (for Dara Greenwald), ballpoint pen, ink and gouache on paper, 2012

The evocation of non-Western, nondenominational, and anti-representational spiritual aesthetics acquires political significance upon realization of for whom Fake has drawn a Gateway. Fake has imagined entryways into the hereafter markedly more colorful, robust, lavish, and peculiar than the pearly ivory luster of Judeo-Christian concepts of the afterlife. Those mourned are imagined as entering a kaleidoscopic, palatial elsewhere, rightly undoing inherited notions of heaven too tidy, too conservatively patriarchal, for housing the spirit of trans-queer-feminist artist of color Mark Aguhar, the anti-racist feminist dance parties of Dara Greenwald, or the critically outsider sensibilities of punk/metal-comic pioneer Dylan Williams.

It is here where Fake’s project best comes into full relief; it is only through the physical manifestation of improbable psychic longing that another world becomes possible, knowable, inhabitable. After hours, off the books, and after life; Fake honors such phenomena, and those residing there, with an informed, aspirational intensity apparent in the meticulous, strange, gorgeous labor of his drawing.




Top 5 Weekend Picks! (11/30-12/2)

November 29, 2012 · Print This Article

1. MORE IS MORE at HAUSER Gallery

Work by Meryl Bennett and Matt Taber, Britton Black, Anita Brathwaite, Guerrilla Smiles, Jane Georges, John Kurtz, Julia Haw, Marc Hauser, Deborah Lader, Jean Loup Sieff, Grace Molek, Harvey Moon, On The Real Film, Rabbits, Alfredo Salazar-Caro, Bill Sosin, and Xiao Tse.

HAUSER Gallery is located at 230 W. Superior St. Reception Friday, 6-9pm.

2. Twelve Galleries Project presents Quarterly Site #12: EPIC SOMETHING at Hyde Park Art Center

Curated by Zach Dodson, Dan Gleason, and Caroline Picard, with work Jesse Ball, Irina Botea, EC Brown, Lilli Carré, Ezra Claytan Daniels, Edie Fake, Heather Mekkelson, B. Ingrid Olson, Frank Pollard, Aay Preston-Myint, Deb Sokolow, Bill Talsma, and Viktor Van Bramer.

Hyde Park Art Center is located at 5020 S. Cornell Ave. Reception Sunday, 2-5pm.

3. Blank Origin at The Franklin

Work by Justin Bendell, Terence Hannum, Thad Kellstadt, David More, and Bert Stabler.

The Franklin is located at 3522 W. Franklin Blvd. Reception Saturday, 6-9pm.

4. Durationals no.1 is located at Anatomy/Gift/Association

Work by Kiam Junio, Chelsey Sprengeler, Natalia Nicholson, Joshua Roginsky and Collin Pressler.

Anatomy/Gift/Association is located at 1619 W. 16th St. Reception Saturday, 7-9pm.

5. Where I’d Leave the Thing Itself at Roots and Culture

Work by Lilli Carre and Alexander Stewart.

Roots and Culture is located at 1034 N. Milwaukee Ave. Reception Friday, 6-9pm.




Top 5 Weekend Picks (6/29 & 6/30) –

June 28, 2012 · Print This Article

1. The Dragon is the Frame at Gallery 400

Work by Mark Aguhar, Claire Arctander, Nina Barnett, Jeremy Bolen, Elijah Burgher, Edie Fake, Pamela Fraser, Tiffany Funk, R. E. H. Gordon, Steve Hnilicka, Kasia Houlihan, Mark Kent, Young Joon Kwak, Andrew Mausert-Mooney, Marianna Milhorat, Tim Nickodemus, Aay Preston-Myint, Juana Peralta, Macon Reed, Colin Self, Michael Sirianni, Nathan Thomas, Neal Vandenbergh, Xina Xurner and Isaac Fosl-Van Wyke, Allison Yasukawa, Gwendolyn Zabicki, and Latham Zearfoss.

Gallery 400 is located at 400 S. Peoria St. Reception Friday, 5-8pm.

2. Show Room at Threewalls

Curated by Shannon Stratton, with work by Laura Davis, Carson Fisk-Vittori and Julia Klein.

Threewalls is located at 119 N. Peoria St. #2C. Reception Friday, 6-9pm.

3. KLOSS/STOLTMANN at New Capital

Work by Mike Kloss and Kirsten Stoltmann.

New Capital is located at 3114 W. Carroll St. Reception Saturday, 7-10pm.

4. Inner Self at Prak Sis Gallery

Work by Juyeon Kim.

Prak Sis Gallery is located at 1917 W. Irving Park Rd. Reception Saturday, 5-8pm.

5. Bowling Alone at Andrew Rafacz Gallery

Work by Brandon Anschultz, Daniel Baird, Benjamin Funke, Sarah Mosk, Eileen Mueller, Aay Preston-Myint, and Min Song.

Andrew Rafacz Gallery is located at 835 W. Washington Blvd. Reception Saturday, 4-7pm.




Come & Have Some CAKE

June 13, 2012 · Print This Article

There is a really fantastic comics festival going down this weekend at Columbia College. Edie Fake and Neil Brideau have been putting it together for the last several months, as is evident from the ambitious vision and extensive programming. It’s like a world-class event with some phenomenal talent, old and new alike. A couple of weeks ago, I had the chance to email back and forth with them about what the festival is about, what’s going down and how it relates to the pulse of the Chicago comic scene.
Caroline Picard: I can’t believe that CAKE is just around the corner — what made you all decide to put something like this together? Why this year? What’s it been like to organize?
Edie Fake: Yeah - CAKE is coming up so fast – it’s really exciting! Our initial impulse was that the alternative comics community in Chicago is so large and vibrant, it didn’t make sense tonot have a comics festival to celebrate it. We’d been to other amazing small press festivals of different flavors: TCAF in Toronto, Stumptown in Portland, SPX in Bethesda, BCGF in New York, APE in San Francisco… and it’s awesome to see these festivals harnessing the energy of a city’s scene and putting it in conversation with artists from all over.
This year is shaping up as an amazing year to debut a show like CAKE – there’s a ton of outstanding comics coming out right now, and I’m blown away by the talent we’ll be hosting. We’ve gotten to watch the Chicago Zine Fest (CZF) really take off in the past few years too, which is really encouraging.
Organizing for this year’s CAKE meant laying a lot of groundwork for the festival to continue – so it’s been a long and wild ride at times. We’ve got a tight core of five organizers now and an auxiliary committee of about 20 other folks and that sort of manpower really helps make everything more manageable. It actually makes putting it together pretty fun.
CP: In many ways I feel like your efforts in organizing community zine and comic-events is this incredible way of drawing out and publicizing vital energy that tends to lie below the surface. I feel like there is a ton of natural comic-energy at the moment, but I also feel like my awareness is tied to community opportunities for discussion and public engagement (like CAKE) that you and others are creating. Can you talk a little bit about what that’s been like? And maybe the tension (if there is one) between insular community-creativity and public accessibility? 

Neil Brideau: I think over the past few generations comics have really come into their own.  They’re being accepted more by the larger cultural world, and I think that helps cartoonists break out of their shells a little bit.  Most of CAKE’s exhibitors are in their late twenties and early thirties, and I feel like this generation is a lot more social than their immediate predecessors.  There’s this stereotype of the alternative comics artist toiling away in their studio not getting any financial or critical compensation for what they love, and feeling sorry for themselves.  But I see our peers really celebrating their creative process and the creative process of others. Not that there aren’t a lot of nights spent alone in a room inking pages of comics very few people will read.  I think Chicago too, in general is really welcoming of DIY and small-run creativity. Whether it’s the Night Market, or the CIMM Fest, or the Chicago Zine Fest, or Printers Ball, or house shows that DIYCHI is putting together, Chicago seems to be an incubator for lo-fi production and celebration of that production.  I think cartoonists in Chicago react to that energy, and are more social and community-oriented animals.

CP: Is there a way that you would characterize the comic-making energy and interest in Chicago at the moment? Do you have a sense for how that compares to other cities?
EF: Comics in Chicago have been a pretty big deal for a while – but I think we’re in a golden time right now. There’s a lot of overlapping community here. The Trubble Club is a great example of folks meeting up and drawing, sharing about what they’re making and influencing each other’s work. We’ve got micropresses like Sarah Becan’s Shortpants Press and printshops like Spudnik and try-anything stores like Quimby’s. Lyra Hill’s performative reading series Brain Frame is expanding what  comics are and how they’re presented. We’ve also seen totally off-the-chain events happen here recently like Hilary Chute’s star-studded Comics: Philosophy and Practice conference. This city values great comics like no place else- the scene here is really open, supportive and interactive. People here really up the ante for each other.
CP: I feel like we should talk about CAKE too, of course! What kind of things can people expect? Are there certain events that stand out as highlights for you?
EF: It’s going to be a jam-packed weekend! We’ve got over 200 artists exhibiting comics and a full slate of panels, screenings and conversations. We tried to set up events that we thought were a vital part of comics that we hadn’t seen happen before, like a panel on silkscreened comics and how the printing technique changes and expands the shape of comics. Ryan Sands, who’s an incredibly interesting and edgy editor is presenting a slideshow/mixtape of stuff he’s excited about and it just might be like seeing the future. The Eyeworks Animation Festival has curated a great program of work that highlights the overlap of comics and cartoons along with a q&a with Amy Lockhart, Marc Bell, Jim Trainor and Jo Dery. We’ve also got artist and comics historian Joe Tallarico leading a discussion on comics and fine art between two tremendous local art monsters, Paul Nudd and Karl Wirsum.
That’s just the tip of the iceberg, too – we’ve really been able to do a lot our first year out, including putting out an anthology CAKE Book with ITDN Group and an art show in conjunction with Morpho Gallery’s downtown Annex. It’s going to be a great time.
CP: Aren’t some people debuting comics too? What’s that like? (I’ve never been to something where comics — and multiple comics — debuted, but I imagine it’s some kind of custom? haha. I sound like such a goober.)
NB: Oh yeah! Debuts are a great tradition at alternative comics shows. Self- and small-press publishers often use comics fests as anchors to plan their publishing schedule. Making a comics fest like CAKE as the first time someone can get their hands on a comic helps create a buzz for their publication, the creators are excited to get it in people’s hands, and a lot of attendees seek out new work, knowing their the first folks to get their eyes on the comic!  So celebrating these brand new books are events within the larger event of CAKE and those celebrations add to the excitement that already exists within this convergence of tons of comics creators showing off their gems of self expression.
We have over 25 new titles debuting at CAKE, which we’ve been announcing on our website, one at a time. Being the one who posts them on the site, I’ve been bubbling with anticipation about some of the stuff coming out.  My list of comics I need to get my hands on is already really big.  A few that stand out to me are:
Suck It Up by Krystal DiFronzo, who enthusiastically performed a portion of the comic (which involves a character puking out her stomach to consume her lunch) at the most recent Brain Frame performance at Happy Dog
July Diary by Gabrielle Bell, published by Uncivilized Books.  Gabrielle is a great cartoonist who drew a comic everyday last July, which is now collected in this book.
The Adventure School for Ladies Comics Intensive, is putting together a book during their two-week session, which takes place right before CAKE, so their book will be hot off the presses!
Weather by Gabby Schulz -who also goes by the name Ken Dahl.  Secret Acres is publishing a comic featuring his character, Gordon Smalls, who is a great vehicle for Gabby’s social commentary on american consumerism.
For more information about CAKE and all its illustrious events, please visit their website.