The School of the Art Institute of Chicago
Tracy Ostmann Haschke (b. 1969) March 6, 2016
As a native of rural Missouri, my artistic roots grew from a family of craftsmen and artisans—wood workers, clockmakers, furniture builders, potters and painters. I have followed in the path of art making like my talented ancestors before me.
After getting my BFA from Webster University in St. Louis, Missouri, I received a Post Baccalaureate certificate from The Art Institute of Chicago. I stayed in Chicago to pursue my art career. I exhibited in coffee shops, restaurants, bars, and art festivals. In 1998, I started my own decorative painting business to support my art. My services included painted murals, decorative wall and furniture finishes, designing and constructing sculpture, and mosaics for businesses, residences and museums. My clients include The John G. Shedd Aquarium, The Field museum, The Chicago Historical Society, Northwestern Memorial Hospital, Jelly Belly Candy Co., Warner Brothers, The University of Pennsylvania, Art and Soul restaurant in Washington D.C., Harvest Manor Nut Company, and The Cliff Dwellers Club of Chicago.
I’ve participated in several gallery exhibits over the past twenty years, as well as public space venues. My work is included in private residences and Institutions throughout the United States as well as South Africa, Argentina, and Cuba. Today, I continue to create new work for exhibitions and seek out commission opportunities. I have resided in E. Garfield Park for fifteen years with my husband and two children.
My new body of work marks a significant time of growth for me as an artist. The past two years have been a challenging experience as I have worked to combine and consolidate the most distinctive and positive aspects of my work thus far. My resulting body of work is emotional, visceral, and abstract.
Moved by the rewards and challenges that characterize my own experience as an urban mother, informed by my observations of others navigating the contours of city life, my work reflects daily activities that go unnoticed by many. I find these simple moments surprisingly gratifying. Each painting is a “snapshot” of these fragments in time. Considered together, the series blooms into a narrative of our modern family experience. Each piece contemplates these timeless activities and considers how they are undertaken today as well as how they were undertaken by the women artisans of my heritage.