2nd Flr Gallery is pleased to present a new site-specific piece by (ƒ)utility projects. Titled Gallery: 2nd Flr, this intervention explores the apartment-gallery format: how do living spaces and exhibition spaces co-exist? Where is the boundary between what can and cannot be elevated to the status of “art” in these informal venues? In Gallery: 2nd Flr, (ƒ)utility projects hyper-formalizes the space, transforming viewers expectations of the apartment exhibition experience by borrowing decorative arts and designed object display tropes from the Art Institute of Chicago. Deliberately crafted wall labels, carefully attenuated spot lighting, and custom-built pedestals will convert the 2nd Flr Gallery into an exhibition of itself. The interstices between seamlessness and overt, unconvincing contrivance that result from this intervention invite a dialogue about curation, display, the art object and the gallery site.
Begun in summer 2009 as an offshoot of Drawing Studio: Articulating Space, a course at The School of the Art Institute of Chicago, (f)utility consists of Paola Cabal, painting and drawing and contemporary practices faculty, Michael Genge, SAIC architecture student, and Christopher Grieshaber, SAIC designed objects student. The group forged its working paradigm over the course of two major installations in the pedway open studio, a Department of Cultural Affairs Public Art Program space below the Chicago Cultural Center. (ƒ)utility officially debuted on March 19, 2010 with an exhibition at SubCity projects. They have since presented on their integration of electronic visualization and digital production methods at this year's "Vers1on" festival, in addition to designing an exhibition pavilion/intervention for Vers10n. (ƒ)utility was awarded a CAAP grant from the City of Chicago Department of Cultural Affairs in retroactive support of their debut project this past August; opening November 12, 2010, the piece at 2nd Flr gallery is (ƒ)utility’s 3rd official effort as a collaborative.