Art Seen: Chicago

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CHICAGO ART CRITICS FORUM: SALON REVIEW

Friday, February 17, 2017 6:30 PM Panel Discussion 7:30 PM Cocktail Hour Mana Contemporary | 2233 S Throop St Chicago, IL 60608 THE SEEN and EXPO CHICAGO, in collaboration with Mana Contemporary, present the Chicago Art Critics Forum. In its fifth edition, Salon Review convenes a live panel of contemporary critics to discuss exhibitions currently[…]

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SADIE BENNING // SHARED EYE — INTERVIEW

In Conversation with Kate Pollasch Viewing Sadie Benning’s 2007 video work Play Pause is to be enveloped in a slow submersion of textural sounds, tactile traces, banality, and erotic intimacies that seems to unmask something indefinably true about living in Chicago. It is a work that lingers, like a shadow, coloring one’s own experiences from[…]

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BEN RIVERS // THE RENAISSANCE SOCIETY

by Brandon Sward Since temperature records began in 1880, the Summer of 2016 has made its mark in history as the hottest to date. As we watch politicians lock horns over the implications, and even existence of global warming, the art world has had its own sort of reckoning with nature—evidenced by the proliferation of[…]

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ZAK PREKOP // SHANE CAMPBELL GALLERY

by Matthew Girson  The paintings of Zak Prekop, most recently on view at Shane Campbell Gallery, stake an odd claim on the tradition of gestural abstraction. The bold vitality that once characterized expressionist gesture goes dry on Prekop’s brushes—its color remains, but is rendered stiff and flat. Operating at a sober distance from Capital “E”[…]

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FOUR DECADES A GALLERIST // RHONA HOFFMAN

by Katy Donoghue click to download PDF This year marks the fortieth anniversary of Rhona Hoffman Gallery in Chicago. The momentous occasion will be marked with consecutive thematic shows this fall and winter, in three parts—starting in mid-September and running through mid-February, 2017. The first portion of the exhibitions will focus on minimal and conceptual[…]

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DIANA THATER // THE SYMPATHETIC IMAGINATION

by Noah Hanna click here to download PDF A group of divers drop into the water; greens and blues wash over the gallery’s walls, floor, and ceiling as the camera sinks below the surface of the waves. Quick yet calculated shots project a pod of dolphins and an enamored film crew in tow. Diana Thater’s[…]

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BASIM MAGDY // THE STARS WERE ALIGNED FOR A CENTURY OF NEW BEGINNINGS

by Omar Kholeif click here to download PDF Basim Magdy was born in Assiut, Egypt, and now lives and works between Basel, Switzerland and Cairo, Egypt. Magdy’s work introduces viewers to the world through a satirical eye—his drawings, sculptures, videos, and installations are conceived with a taste for the absurd. Like dreams, elements of a[…]

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THE ARTS CLUB OF CHICAGO // A CENTURY IN IMAGES

by Anastasia Karpova Tinari click here to download PDF The Arts Club of Chicago was founded a hundred years ago with a mission to promote Modernism, preceding like-minded institutions such as the Société Anonyme, Inc., Barnes Collection and Museum of Modern Art in New York, and was the first in Chicago to exhibit works by[…]

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GEORGE KUCHAR // ICEBERG PROJECTS

by Hiba Ali click here to download PDF Our relationships are precious. For George Kuchar, this message is prominent in Bocko, his recent exhibition at Iceberg Projects, featuring work on and inspired by his dog and lifelong companion. Known for his campy, over the top aesthetic, this exhibition reveals the softer and more intimate side[…]

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MICHAEL RAKOWITZ // GRAHAM FOUNDATION & RHONA HOFFMAN GALLERY

by Hiba Ali The history of modernism is wrapped within it a city’s architecture and communities. Buildings not only reflect the trends in vogue, but also taste—the concept of ‘social capital’ coined by Pierre Bourdieu—used to describe a historicized socio-political class construction, coded with value.[i] These ongoing imprints are reflected in Louis Sullivan’s architectural language,[…]

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THE PROPELLER GROUP // MUSEUM OF CONTEMPORARY ART CHICAGO

by Patrick G. Putze The Propeller Group (TPG), currently on view at the Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago, is an uncommon breed of exhibition, invoking critical thought and the infrequently felt elation that is rarely found in contemporary art. The collaborative of artists—working between Ho Chi Mihn City and Los Angeles—is made up of Matt[…]

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ABOVE, BEFORE & AFTER // MUSEUM OF CONTEMPORARY ART CHICAGO

By Brandon Sward You may not know it yet, but you are at the center of Above, Before & After at the Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago. The exhibition borrows its name from three of the six prepositions within Bruce Nauman’s series Elliott’s Stones (1989), which resides just outside the exhibition space. Resembling gravestone rubbings,[…]

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MUDROOM // THE MISSION

by Hiba Ali In a dimly lit gallery space of THE MISSION, Austen Brown’s MUDROOM (2016) features three television screens hoisted on black poles with looping videos. The videos review the process of shale procurement, an extraction of the mud-based sedimentary rock, and the industry’s aftermath in North Dakota’s Bakken region. The Bakken shale formation stretches from[…]

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KATHRYN ANDREWS // MENACE IN THE DETAILS

By Natalie Hegert download printable pdf The western sky burned orange like a hot ember, searing the sharp silhouettes of palm trees onto my retinas as I guided my car over the onramp of the 5 freeway, headed north to Highland Park. Speeding up to slow down, red brake lights sparked on and off ahead[…]

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COLLECTOR’S CORNER // HELYN GOLDENBERG

By Katy Donoghue download printable pdf Art is the first thing you will see when walking in to Helyn Goldenberg’s apartment on Lakeshore Drive in Chicago. In the entryway alone is a set of Ai Weiwei Ming Dynasty pots, their bright colors aligned side by side, on what would typically be a mundane mail table[…]

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PLURAL POP // TATE MODERN, WALKER ART CENTER, MCA CHICAGO

By Stephanie Cristello download printable pdf You know the cover by heart. The colors of their suits unfold from left to right in the only way they could; bright yellow, piercing pink, neon blue, to tangerine crimson—a picture perfect display of regalia, their names spelled out in flowers. The surrounding crowd, collaged and tightly pressed[…]

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KERRY JAMES MARSHALL // PROFILE OF THE ARTIST

By Caroline Picard download printable pdf “We are not, as we sometimes like to imagine, independent thinkers with our own unique & groovy style of cognition: we have in fact inherited a narrow repertoire of prefab concepts, and we find ourselves thinking as thinking things on highly ramified architectonics of ideas, and along deeply grooved paths of[…]

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Issue 02 | Launch Party

  DJ Pluto will be spinning. RSVP to editor@theseenjournal.org                  

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NEXO/NEXUS | DEPAUL ART MUSEUM

by Hiba Ali For people of color, the existence of communities is framed within the Western political framework as perpetually “new” — as though to presuppose a previously absent history. Nexo/Nexus: Latin American Connections in the Midwest, currently on view at the DePaul Art Museum, contravenes and corrects this narrow socio-political assessment. The works featureed[…]

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ANDREW HOLMQUIST // CARRIE SECRIST

by Caroline Picard Chicago-based painter Andrew Holmquist thinks and works through multiple mediums to reflect—not only on the act of painting and its central position in his practice, but also the (primarily male) body moving through space. His latest exhibition, Stage Left, includes 26 new works ranging from paintings on canvas, ceramic collaborations, a collaborative fashion[…]

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CHRISTOPHER MEERDO // DOCUMENT

by Vanessa Gravenor A group of screens lie upon a gray industrial floor, entangled within one another like roots in a rhizomatic structure. Each of the screens project different images of alternate digital worlds. Is this digital culture showing its inherent networked structure? A flat first inquiry. On the walls, one sees other screens deconstructed[…]

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CARLOS BUNGA // STONY ISLAND ARTS BANK

by Anastasia Karpova Tinari In Carlos Bunga’s Under the Skin, a colonnade of cardboard scaffolding fills and divides the high vaulted interior architecture of Theaster Gates’ newly-renovated Stony Island Arts Bank building. The Spain-based artist uses humble materials like cardboard and tape to create architectonic installations, in which the construction and deconstruction of the work[…]

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ASSISTED // KAVI GUPTA GALLERY

by Stephanie Cristello Curated by and including work of artist Jessica Stockholder, whose exhibition Door Hinges is concurrently on view in the lower galleries of Kavi Gupta’s Elizabeth Street location, ASSISTED features sixteen artists, and could easily be a visual essay on form and object-hood. Here, the group exhibition format is approached as a work in and of itself,[…]

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PROFILE OF THE COLLECTORS // NANCY & DAVID FREJ

By Stephanie Cristello In his 1958 text The Poetics of Space, Gaston Bachelard makes the argument that one can “read a house” or “read a room.”[1] For him, a house was an amalgamation of a thousand images — though his proposition was not entirely visual. This “reading” was not limited to visual language (ie. the[…]