Curated by Allison Lacher, with work by Jessica Caponigro, Jeffrey Michael Austin, and Rafael E. Vera.
Chicago Artists Coalition is located at 217 N. Carpenter St. Reception Friday 6-9pm.
Work by Jaime Angelopoulos and Cody Tumblin.
LVL3 1542 N. Milwaukee Ave. Reception Saturday, 6-10pm.
Work by Murat Adash, Mark Barker, Levi Budd, Anna Bunting-Branch, Robert Crosse, Angharad Davies, Lila de Magalhaes, Peter Ferry, Stephen Kwok, Mitsu Salmon, Michal Samama and Keijaun Thomas.
Julius Caesar is located at 3311 W. Carroll Ave. Reception Sunday, 1-5pm.
Work by Victoria Martinez, Krista Franklin, Josue Mora, Gilberto Sandoval, Amara Betty Martin, Tyrue “Slang” Jones , Reginald Eldridge, Jr., aka RJ EL, Miguel Angel Rodriguez, Oscar Arriola, Rae Bees, Matthew Silva, Ricardo Gonzalez, Gloria “Gloe” Talamantes, Emmanuel White Eagle, Tissueart and Perpetual Rebel.
The Carlos & Dominguez Fine Arts Gallery is located at 1538 W. Cullerton St. Reception Saturday, 6-11pm.
Work by Travis Krupka.
Hidden Dog is located at 2151 W. 21st St. Reception Friday, 6-10pm.
Work by Jeremy Bolen, Alan Cohen, Adam Ekberg, Myra Greene, Shane Huffman, Barbara Kasten, Jason Lazarus, Aspen Mays, John Opera, Jason Reblando, David Schalliol, Matthew Schlagbaum, and Adam Schreiber.
DePaul University Art Museum is located at 935 W. Fullerton Ave. Reception Friday, 6-8pm.
Curated by Lucas Bucholtz with work by Carl Baratta, Zack Wirsum, Lauren Ball, Nathan Carder, Mariano Chavez, Karolina Gnatowski, Pedro Munoz, and Mindy Rose Schwartz.
SideCar is located at 411 Huehn St., Hammond, IN. Reception Saturday, 5-10pm.
Work by Paulien Oltheten, Odette England, Atget, Garry Winogrand, Sohei Nishino, Simryn Gill, and Vito Accondi.
Museum of Contemporary Photography is located at 600 S. Michigan Ave. Show opens Friday.
Work by Harvey Moon, Nick Briz, Yaloo Pop, Jason Soliday, William Robertson, Daniel Rourke, Incidental Music, shawne michaelain holloway, Kevin Carey aka Yung Pharaoh, and Chris McLaughlin.
TRITRIANGLE is located at 1550 N. Milwaukee Ave. Fl. 3. Reception Saturday, 7pm.
Work by Slang, Zore, Ish Muhammad, Hebru Brantley, Uneek, Statik, Brooks Golden, Chris Silva, Your Are Beautiful, Oscar Arriola, and more.
Chicago Cultural Center is located at 78 E. Washington St. Reception Friday, 5:30-7:30pm.
Chicago is one of the few major cities that use taxpayer dollars to destroy art, to the tune of $9 million in 2010.Â Itâ€™s this situation that makes a book like Chicago Street Art a valuable historical document as well as a rare survey of the street artists currently producing work.Â This artwork is literally here today and gone tomorrow.
The book also serves as an opportunity to discover whoâ€™s behind that mysterious piece of art that has suddenly appeared in your neighborhood.Â I learned that it was CYRO who has pasted up an odd creature made of mostly fingers on the back of a local clothes donation box.Â I found out that it was CRO who did the stencil of a cheerleader holding a cross in one handâ€”and a gun in the other.Â Importantly some artists and artwork remain unknown, even within the ultra-reclusive street art community, but they are still included. Like the artist who puts up positive phrases in block letters around town like, â€œTRUE LOVEâ€ and â€œHOPE DIES LASTâ€.
Photos are usually the highlight of street art and graffiti books and Chicago Street Art has excellent ones from Oscar Arriola, Chris Diers, Patrick Hershberger and Thomas Fennell IV.Â Some of these photos were shown in the Chicago Urban Art Societyâ€™s exhibition â€œThe Chicago Street Art Show.â€Â Â Shot on professional cameras and clearly with time to spare, they are better than the photos in another recently published book about the same topic, The History of American Graffiti (HarperDesign, 2011), which had to rely on amateur snapshots.Â The photographers succeed at including the surrounding of the artwork, which is a significant challenge for picturing street art.Â You can tell that Grocer piece is on one of Chicagoâ€™s iconic drawbridges, and a Donâ€™t Fret piece is on a pylon for the El tracks.Â The grit of the street comes through too; these walls are not decontextualized with the work pried from its environment.Â The abandoned buildings are seen, the weeds and tall grass of neglected lots are pictured, the dirty blank expanse of a brick wall is turned into an artistâ€™s canvas.Â These photos and photographers do the art and, importantly for street art, its environment total justice.Â Iâ€™d imagine the artists are pleased.
And all the must-know Chicago street artists are included here: CLS, Donâ€™t Fret, Goons, SWIV, Nice One, SOLVE, MENTAL 312 and many others. Thereâ€™s only a single artist inclusion that I take issue with, the religious nut-ball that posts screeds all over town, listed in the book only as â€œCrazy Talk/Artist Unknown.â€ This is most certainly not art, even if it is on the street.Â In an especially unfortunate move a homophobic piece from this person is included, although itâ€™s tempered by a note someone else has scrawled on it, â€œGod also said love thy neighbor assholes.â€ This piece and the artist should never have been included. While it shows the democratic nature of the street, this is not art.Â Thereâ€™s no indication that it was ever intended to be.
Goons. Photo by Oscar Arriola [not included in book]
The author, designer, editor, and publisher Joseph J. Depre makes a valiant and admirable effort at theorizing street art in his several essays but falls short.Â There are some significant errors (â€œJackson Pollackâ€) along with spelling and grammar issues that diminish the effort, starting at the introduction. The design could also be more uniform, with fonts, font size and margins frequently changing from essay to essay.Â But nonetheless you have to give him props for being a one-man printing company.
Despite some flaws, Chicago Street Art is a must-have for anyone interested in street art, whether they are in Chicago or not.Â It also fills a gap in Chicagoâ€™s reception of the art form, while Los Angeles is having a landmark street art exhibition at their Museum of Contemporary Art, Chicagoâ€™s institutions have remained completely indifferent.Â And at $15, the price of two drinks at the bar, itâ€™s quite affordable.
Chicago Street Art is available for purchase at the Chicago Urban Art Society Chicago Street Art is available for purchase at:Â www.chicagostreetartbook.com/)