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Joel Kuennen

20141205162436-drawings_grid Adam Douglas Thompson: Dialogical Particulars   Pick-button-5bf6c1b36c3b74ec8f312c7c9f6f1ae3
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Posted 12/5/14

A word forms a concept of its own object in a dialogic way. —Mikhail Bakhtin, Discourse in the Novel, 1941 Adam Douglas Thompson’s drawings are words. His installed formations are sentences. His words, however, are not defined. His sentences are not linear. They are dialogic imaginations, each image acts a concept which through their relational grouping gains meaning. The groupings can and should be read multidirectionally. This approach is how Thompson believes thought works, a concept trail... [more]

20141205155154-oren_pinhassi A Play on Material: Oren Pinhassi   Pick-button-5bf6c1b36c3b74ec8f312c7c9f6f1ae3
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Posted 12/5/14

Material can be transcendent. Postmodernism is failing. History is a spiral. These three assumptions underlie Oren Pinhassi’s work. Beginning with the familiar—towels, a backpack, a dwelling—objects are transformed through the addition of another common material, plaster. Through this addition, he transubstantiates the everyday into thematic sculptural and architectural forms, an act that Pinhassi describes as transcendent. There is a key definition being explored throug... [more]

20141118200334-growth-1234__1_ Arts and Banking: Umpqua's Foray into the Arts   Pick-button-5bf6c1b36c3b74ec8f312c7c9f6f1ae3
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Posted 11/18/14

Corporatism pervades the art world: BMWs are wrapped in Jeff Koons vinyl, museum exhibitions and art fairs are sponsored by global financial institutions, one mega luxury conglomerate even has an entire museum. It's a simple fact now: money and art go hand-in-hand. Usually, the issue taken up is the cooption of art for financial/political purposes and the impure state in which this leaves art but, frankly, it’s hard to believe this argument is still around let alone received as valid. Not since t... [more]

20141103150439-img_0172 Hallowqueen! At MoMA PS1: A Costume Recap   Pick-button-5bf6c1b36c3b74ec8f312c7c9f6f1ae3
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Posted 11/3/14

MoMA PS1 threw their annual Halloween Ball last Friday - the theme this year: Hallowqueens! The galleries remained open during the costume ball making for some interesting juxtapositions. First, four dumpsters sat in the courtyard marked with "THROW YOUR ART AWAY", a project from Bob and Roberta Smith (actually one person) that asks gallery goers to bring in their old art and treat it as the commodity it is. If your art is lucky (read: good enough), MoMA will display it on the second floor for a... [more]

The DIS collective Appointed Curatorial Team of the 9th Berlin Biennale  
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9/24/14

Office Planter by Lizzie Fitch, $200 on disown DIS, the collective behind a variety of interruptive enterprises such as dismagazine, disown, and disimages has been appointed the curatorial panel of the 9th Berlin Biennale. While the 8th Biennale was curated by Juan A. Gaitán and focused on themes of post-colonialism, the selection of DIS for the next iteration marks a commitment by the KW Institute for Contemporary Art to keep the Berlin Biennale an exciting and semi-unpredictable exhibi... [more]

Practicing Wellness: An (Art) Therapy Session with Zachary Cahill  
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8/3/14

Chicago, Aug. 2014: Zachary Cahill is an interdisciplinary artist working in Chicago. He is a lecturer at the University of Chicago Department of Visual Arts and Coordinator of the Open Practice Committee. His work was recently included in the 8th Berlin Biennale, curated by Juan A. Gaitán; USSA 2012 Wellness Center: Snow, curated by Abigail Winograd at the Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago; and the Smart Museum of Art in a project curated by Sarah Mendelsohn. The Wellness Center is the third... [more]

20140320130240-aiyr5_for_joel 12 Residencies in 5 Months: One artist's attempt to redefine patronage   Pick-button-5bf6c1b36c3b74ec8f312c7c9f6f1ae3
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Posted 3/20/14

Liliya Lifanova received her MFA from SAIC in 2010. Following that, she found herself asking a familiar question to many young artists: what next? Nurtured by the inclusive, critical and supportive, art-centered environment of graduate school, her first post-graduation initiative was a take on the practice of residencies. Called Artist in YOUR Residence, the purpose of the project was to explore concepts of modern patronage and bypass the traditional models for a direct relationship between Artist and... [more]

20140307151612-leonard_photo In Conversation: First Impressions of the 2014 Whitney Biennial   Pick-button-5bf6c1b36c3b74ec8f312c7c9f6f1ae3
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Terry Adkins, Etel Adnan, Alma Allen, Ei Arakawa, Uri Aran, Robert Ashley, Michel Auder, Lisa Anne Auerbach, Julie Ault, Darren Bader, Kevin Beasley, Gretchen Bender, Stephen Berens, Dawoud Bey, Jennifer Bornstein, Andrew Bujalski, Elijah Burgher, Triple Canopy, Lucien Castaing-Taylor, Sarah Charlesworth, Yve Laris Cohen, Public Collectors, Matthew Deleget, David Diao, Zackary Drucker, Paul Druecke, Jimmie Durham, Rhys Ernst, Rochelle Feinstein, Radamés “Juni” Figueroa, Morgan Fisher, Louise Fishman, Victoria Fu, Malik Gaines, Gaylen Gerber, Jeff Gibson, Jade Gordon, Sara Greenberger Rafferty, Tony Greene, Joseph Grigely, Miguel Gutierrez, Karl Haendel, David Hammons, Matt Hanner, Philip Hanson, Jonn Herschend, Sheila Hicks, Channa Horwitz, HOWDOYOUSAYYAMINAFRICAN?, susan howe, Jacqueline Humphries, Critical Practices Inc., Gary Indiana, Doug Ischar, Carol Jackson, Travis Jeppesen, Alex Jovanovich, Angie Keefer, Ben Kinmont, Shio Kusaka, Sensory Ethnography Lab, Chris Larson, Diego Leclery, Zoe Leonard, Sherrie Levine, Tony Lewis, Pam Lins, Fred Lonidier, Ken Lum, Shana Lutker, Dashiell Manley, John Mason, Keith Mayerson, Suzanne McClelland, Dave McKenzie, Bjarne Melgaard, Rebecca Morris, Joshua Mosley, Dona Nelson, Ken Okiishi, Pauline Oliveros, Joel Otterson, Laura Owens, Paul P., Taisha Paggett, Charlemagne Palestine, Véréna Paravel, Jessie Mott & Steve Reinke, David Robbins, Carissa Rodriguez, Sterling Ruby, Miljohn Ruperto, Jacolby Satterwhite, Peter Schuyff, Alexandro Segade, Allan Sekula, semiotext(e), Trevor Shimizu, Amy Sillman, Valerie Snobeck, A.L. Steiner, Catherine Sullivan, Emily Sundblad, Ricky Swallow, Tony Tasset, Sergei Tcherepnin, Philip Vanderhyden, Pedro Vélez, Charline von Heyl, David Foster Wallace, Dan Walsh, Alex Waterman, Donelle Woolford, Molly Zuckerman-Hartung at Whitney Museum of American Art March 7th 1:00 PM - 9:00 PM
Posted 3/7/14

ArtSlant editors Natalie Hegert, Joel Kuennen, and Charlie Schultz met up at Agra, an Indian restaurant on Lexington Avenue, to discuss the opening of the 2014 Whitney Biennial, its surprises, best in show, and disappointments. They touch on trends and themes of scale, archives, lists, dongs, and objectness—parsing the line between artwork and artifact. Charlie Schultz: I guess I’ll start by saying I found this year’s iteration of the [Whitney] Biennial to be far less crowded than in... [more]

20140214102048-img_6269 Deep Systems at Public Works   Pick-button-5bf6c1b36c3b74ec8f312c7c9f6f1ae3
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Theodore Darst, Peter Jellitsch at Public Works February 7th - April 4th
Posted 2/14/14

In writing this review, Dear Reader, it has been difficult to retain a narrative thread. Each work at ONLY REAL, Public Works latest exhibition, seems to reference another work in the exhibition while simultaneously opening up further implications and complications in a seemingly endless cascade of elusive meaning, contributing to a feeling that each explication is about to collapse in on itself. This feeling of anxiety of collapse is an apt affect for a series of visual explorations of the invi... [more]

20131203210000-rodolfo-diaz-cervantes UNTITLED. Needs No Title: A Talk with Omar Lopez-Chahoud   Pick-button-5bf6c1b36c3b74ec8f312c7c9f6f1ae3
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at UNTITLED. December 4th, 2013 - December 8th, 2013
Posted 12/3/13

Call him Omar. A bundle of kind energy dedicated to his curatorial craft, Omar Lopez-Chahoud guided UNTITLED. through its first iteration last year during Miami Art Week to a very successful conclusion. Much more than a white whale beached on the sands off Ocean Drive, the great white tent designed by Keenen/Riley Architects (K/R Architects), and redesigned this year by the same, promises to be as exhilarating as last year, a welcome respite amidst the floundering chaos of Miami Art Week. The ma... [more]

20131124212909-20121004183631-4kang_corememory ArtSlant Prize 2013: Robin Kang - Playing with Machines   Pick-button-5bf6c1b36c3b74ec8f312c7c9f6f1ae3
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Posted 11/23/13

Robin Kang - First Place, ArtSlant Prize 2013 Robin Kang interrogates machinery. From her roots as a photographer (BFA) and through her MFA in printmaking at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago, it’s always been about how the machine affects the artwork produced and what exactly can be done within that process of translation: idea to object. Her latest projects involve two very different explorations. Using digital jacquard looms, she recreates patterns taken both from ancient weav... [more]

20131023223025-2934 Canadian Content   Pick-button-5bf6c1b36c3b74ec8f312c7c9f6f1ae3
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at Art Toronto (Toronto International Art Fair) October 25th, 2013 - October 28th, 2013
Posted 10/23/13

In 1968, the idea of Canadian Content was set down as law in the Broadcasting Act of Canada. It ensures that “each broadcasting undertaking shall make maximum use, and in no case less than predominant use, of Canadian creative and other resources in the creation and presentation of programming.” As Ryan Edwardson aptly points out in his book Canadian Content: Culture and the Quest for Nationhood (2008), Canadian Content is a cultural response to a very determined approach to country-b... [more]

20130919202846-tc73 EXPO CHICAGO: The Start of the Circuit   Pick-button-5bf6c1b36c3b74ec8f312c7c9f6f1ae3
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Posted 9/19/13

On August 21st, the New York Times published an article entitled, “For Art Dealers, a New Life on the Circuit.” In it, a great lament for the loss of the fat times when dealers had but to sit in their galleries and wait for buyers to walk through the door. Now, they must trot around the globe, hawking their wares like common international businessmen and businesswomen. Reeling back the snark, traveling is tough; it keeps a person on-edge, off-center but it’s an increasing reality for thos... [more]

20130910090256-blackmon70 Fall Preview: Bacchanal Chicago   Pick-button-5bf6c1b36c3b74ec8f312c7c9f6f1ae3
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Posted 9/10/13

Chicago has doubled-down in September. The month of openings is now a full-on arts bacchanal. The nascent EXPO has proven itself a powerful nexus, pulling together the disparate art worlds of Chicago into a dense cloud of top-notch openings, performances, events and fairs – many scheduling their openings around the weekend of the 20th to coincide with an amassing of collectors. Yet many galleries chose to open their Winter program on the first weekend of September as usual, perhaps to test... [more]

20130813193902-jim_gentry_2 Small Consultancies and the Working Artist: an Interview with Jennifer and James Wallace of nAscent Art New York   Pick-button-5bf6c1b36c3b74ec8f312c7c9f6f1ae3
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Posted 8/13/13

Jennifer and James Wallace, co-founders of nAscent Art New York, have made it their mission to champion emerging artists. Not only that, but they have made it their business. In 2007, nAscent Art began as a small auction house to represent emerging artists. Finding it difficult to drum-up buyers let alone a buyer for emerging artists’ works, they decided to employ a different tact in bringing unknown artists to the marketplace and shifted their model to that of an art consultancy. Since 2010, this h... [more]

Generator/Recycler, Producer/Consumer: Interview with Laura Hyunjhee Kim  
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7/28/13

San Francisco, Jul. 2013: Laura Hyunjhee Kim won ArtSlant’s first Award in New Media earlier this year and lives and works in San Francisco, CA. Kim is currently exhibiting at SoMArts, San Francisco and recently exhibited with popular French new-media gallery, SPAMM (Super Art Modern Museum). Blurring lines between performance and new media practices, Kim presents a mirrored personality, absorbing and expressing the dominant pressures of a mediated society through producing and reproducin... [more]

20130628080438-pope_car_2 An Artist’s Responsibility   Pick-button-5bf6c1b36c3b74ec8f312c7c9f6f1ae3
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Cheryl Pope at moniquemeloche gallery June 22nd, 2013 - August 3rd, 2013
Posted 6/28/13

Chicago is a city of neighborhoods: this is a kind way to put it. In reality, Chicago suffers from deep segregation – limiting the potential of a majority of its citizens. Avenues such as Western are lines that mark boundaries between races and income brackets. As one travels west on Division, from Wicker Park, median household income drops by $30,000 upon crossing Western Avenue. With this drop in income, comes a drop in school funding, resulting in neighborhood schools that lack everything... [more]

20130515182555-laura_kim What is tumblr Art?   Pick-button-5bf6c1b36c3b74ec8f312c7c9f6f1ae3
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Rachelle Beaudoin, Claire Alexandra Burke, Jon Chambers, Oscar David, Laura Dekker, Jordan Gray, Brian James Griffith, Lucia Grossberger Morales, Wei-Ming Ho, Heejin JANG, Laura Hyunjhee Kim, Lawrence Lek, A. Bill Miller, Jonathan Monaghan, Robert Warren Parker, Katherine Parsons, Patr1ck qu1nn, Fay Ray, Nicholas Sassoon, Chase Starr, Joe Winograd, I-YEH WU, Sarah Zucker at ArtPadSF Art Fair May 17th, 2013 9:06 PM - 10:30 PM
Posted 5/15/13

On Friday, May 17th at ArtPadSF, tumblr is hosting the TUMBLR ARTS SUMMIT. Moderated by Annie Werner, the panel is meant to discuss tumblr as a platform for the arts. Kara Q. Smith of ArtSlant SF, Open Space and Art Practical; Aditya Julka, Co-founder of Paddle8; Jennifer Yin of the Asian Art Museum; Liz Glass of CCA Wattis Institute; Ken Harman of Spoke Art; artist Eric Dyer and I will be present on the panel. The focus seems to be more practical: how does your organization leverage tumblr within... [more]

20130319065105-tumblr_ Contemporary Copyright   Pick-button-5bf6c1b36c3b74ec8f312c7c9f6f1ae3
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Posted 3/19/13

How we use images and information is changing, therefore, copyright is changing. The image has migrated away from an object of economic value towards one of heightened cultural capital. Social media has developed in such a way that sharing information has become synonymous with sharing images. Infinite copies of images act as citations to shared opinions and data points. Yet the image is not always tied to the fate of a descriptor, it has also been freed from its referent. The image is loose and free to form its own meaning in the slurry of an image-sopped society.... [more]

20130305182438-img_3030_1 The Overlooked Object: An Interview with Michael Zelehoski at VOLTA   Pick-button-5bf6c1b36c3b74ec8f312c7c9f6f1ae3
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Posted 3/5/13

Michael Zelehoski won the ArtSlant Prize in 2009, the first year the competition ran. Since, his career has only been gaining steam, having two solo shows a year and making the rounds of the fair circuit. I sat down with him in his home/studio in Beacon, NY as he readied his installation, WALL ART for Ethan Cohen Fine Arts’ booth at Volta. Joel Kuennen: Where were you at in your career when you won the ArtSlant Prize? Michael Zelehoski: Nowhere, basically. [laughs] I was showing a little bit in local galleries in Western Massachusetts and gett... [more]

Interview with Danh Vo  
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12/11/12

Chicago, Dec. 2012: Danh Vo, a Danish, Vietnamese-born artist living in Berlin, won the Guggenheim Foundation’s Hugo Boss Prize this year. His work combines a nuanced approach to relations existent within the conventions of the art world as well as the relationships that are developed with objects, both personal and foreign, in the negotiation of identity. In short, Vo’s ability to imbue otherwise mundane objects with a delicate, sublime sentimentality is what makes this young artist worth watc... [more]

20121209172109-20120607184728-what_a_life_ ArtSlant Prize 2012 - Fringe Frontier   Pick-button-5bf6c1b36c3b74ec8f312c7c9f6f1ae3
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Veronica Bruce, Timothy Gaewsky, Steven Vasquez Lopez, Susan Meyer at Aqua Art Miami December 6th, 2012 - December 9th, 2012
Posted 12/9/12

Veronica Bruce - 1st Place, ArtSlant Prize 2012 I met Ms. Bruce in a studio that looks more like a construction site than an artist’s studio, in one of Chicago’s many industrial lofts. Her sculptures rose vertically from the wooden floor, dotting the space as piles of material rounded the interior. Bruce’s process is founded in her training as a painter but has since expanded off the wall and into the exhibition space. She retains an acute understanding of composition and col... [more]

20121206194320-photo_1 ArtSlant Prize 2012: Veronica Bruce - Remnants and Shards   Pick-button-5bf6c1b36c3b74ec8f312c7c9f6f1ae3
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Posted 12/6/12

Veronica Bruce - 1st Place, ArtSlant Prize 2012 I met Ms. Bruce in a studio that looks more like a construction site than an artist’s studio, in one of Chicago’s many industrial lofts. Her sculptures rose vertically from the wooden floor, dotting the space as piles of material rounded the interior. Bruce’s process is founded in her training as a painter but has since expanded off the wall and into the exhibition space. She retains an acute understanding of composition and color while exploring the sculpt... [more]

20121204191102-makoto_saito___prayer__yellow__2011_2012___paul_kasmin_gallery_aaaaaaaaaaazkjy Doing It Right: Art Basel Miami Beach   Pick-button-5bf6c1b36c3b74ec8f312c7c9f6f1ae3
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Posted 12/4/12

Art Basel Miami Beach (ABMB) is the mother of American art fairs (you know this by now). Celebrating a decade this year, ABMB has, from the beginning, been a city-wide event. Every year, a new satellite fair/festival/happening/event is added to the already art-packed weekend and yet it seems Miami has an art tolerance on par with your average Baseler’s liver. ABMB became the destination par excellence in the art world, not only as a way to escape the cold and reach a massive collector base in Miami... [more]

20121205211952-rhq_passingthrough2 Susanne Ghez on R.H. Quaytman and the role of the Curator   Pick-button-5bf6c1b36c3b74ec8f312c7c9f6f1ae3
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R. H. Quaytman at Renaissance Society January 6th, 2013 - February 17th, 2013
Posted 11/28/12

Susanne Ghez, Executive Director of the Renaissance Society, will step down in January after a prestigious career shepherding this Chicago institution known for its impeccable programming in contemporary art. Ms. Ghez took the helm of the Ren, as it’s affectionately called, in 1974 with a meager budget of $25,000 and built one of the country’s premier, non-collecting institutions with a current yearly budget of $1.7 million. For her final exhibition with the Renaissance Society, she has selecte... [more]

20121030095341-atterbury_thestudy-site The Enclosed World   Pick-button-5bf6c1b36c3b74ec8f312c7c9f6f1ae3
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Elizabeth Atterbury at Document October 27th, 2012 - December 8th, 2012
Posted 10/30/12

Elizabeth Atterbury, a recent graduate of MassArt, began with a still life picture of a corner of her friend’s apartment in Portland. The Study began a research-like production that ultimately recalls Man Ray’s experiments with the picture plane (rather than process) through his invention of the rayogram, and in the end draws attention back to the work of photography as a representative analogue. Photography Indoors is an exhibition of twelve small images framed discreetly in glass and wood, exhibited in... [more]

20121023105441-00 Realigning Contexts – Tatzu Nishi’s Discovering Columbus   Pick-button-5bf6c1b36c3b74ec8f312c7c9f6f1ae3
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Posted 10/23/12

Columbus, in a memorialized bold swish of the hips, stands confidently atop a dark, wooden coffee table, glaring off into the corner of a poshly decorated living room. The thirteen-foot tall statue finds an odd home as the axis of this imagined living space. Tatzu Nishi’s Discovering Columbus is this Japanese-born, Berlin-residing artist’s latest work. He has become well-known for his construction of living spaces around architectural ornaments, such as Hotel Gent where a clock tower incised a s... [more]

20121002133941-vo_1 The March of Objects   Pick-button-5bf6c1b36c3b74ec8f312c7c9f6f1ae3
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Danh Vo at Renaissance Society September 23rd, 2012 - December 16th, 2012
Posted 10/2/12

A familiar eye in luminescent, freshly hewn copper stares up from a wooden cradle against a backdrop of anthropomorphic lions ripped from the palace walls of Sargon II, an Assyrian king who ruled in the 7th century BCE. This is probably the most striking installment of Danh Vo’s We the People in Chicago—an indefinite project brought to Chicago as a collaboration between the Art Institute of Chicago and the Renaissance Society that reconstructs the Statue of Liberty’s façade and installs segments... [more]

20120919085506-courtesy_of_studio_gang_ Chicago’s Moment   Pick-button-5bf6c1b36c3b74ec8f312c7c9f6f1ae3
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Posted 9/19/12

What makes EXPO CHICAGO different from the rest? Nicole Berry, Deputy Director of EXPO CHICAGO perhaps said it best towards the end of a chat we had on a sunny day outside a small café near the offices of EXPO in River North. “Hamza Walker said it in an article, ‘Chicago is having a moment,’ which is totally true… Chicago deserves an art fair, a serious art fair of the highest quality and we’re trying to bring that back, but it’s not just about the art fair but about the art community.” The wo... [more]

20120905092311-lostutter_garden CHI Fall Previews: Previews up the Rearview   Pick-button-5bf6c1b36c3b74ec8f312c7c9f6f1ae3
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Posted 9/5/12

It’s that time of month, Chicago. To say that every gallery in town is opening their doors this Friday is hardly an exaggeration. In light of this, I’d like to take a moment to do a quick preview of what we’re looking forward to this weekend and hopefully give some good cues as to where to head to get your fill of Trader Joe’s wine and chilled PBR’s, and perhaps, just perhaps, to catch a glimpse of some great art, between coiffed heads of course. Corbett vs. Dempsey - Robert Lostutter: Garden of Opiates A stellar gallery since 2004, Corbett vs. Dempsey quickly ga... [more]


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