The Makeout Project
The critically acclaimed Art Museo at the InterContinental Chicago O’Hare is featuring a new exhibit by School of the Art Institute of Chicago student-turned-teacher, Jedediah Johnson. The show is free to the public, and runs January 15th to April 15th.
Curated by Schneider Gallery Chicago, the installation entitled The Makeout Project reveals Jedediah’s larger-than-life portraits. The series of images convey an impulsiveness that is the direct result of the moment after contact, or perhaps what could be referred to as the ‘makeout aftermath.’
“I once took a personality test that I felt was very accurate,” recalls Jedediah, an Indianapolis native who now calls Pilsen home. “It said that individuals with my specific personality type like to collect people and experiences. That’s what Makeout is all about; my interactions with people and a shared experience between me and my subjects.”
Specifically, in The Makeout Project, Jedediah puts on lipstick and kisses people before photographing them. “At first I was terrified to kiss girls,” said Jedediah, whose upbringing in a strict household manifested in a need to question everything. “And if I was scared to kiss a girl, I was terrified by the thought of kissing a guy.” That’s when Jedediah got the idea to do the Makeout series and no longer was paralyzed. The lipstick he wears before he kisses each person leaves a mark that gives the viewer a clue as to what has taken place and offers the opportunity to imagine the circumstances surrounding the unseen kiss. Viewers see violence and tenderness, humor and sobriety, sadness and elation in the faces of Jedediah’s subjects.
Shot with a large format camera, the 55” x 44” images read like snapshots, but have the clarity and depth of the 8x10” negative that captured them. Each face, smeared with red lipstick, bears the unique imprint of the photographer’s very physical interaction with his subject. Jedediah’s arm (acting as a very literal artist’s hand) is present in every frame, connecting him to the subject and producing a composition in which we can easily place ourselves in the position of photographer.
About the Art Museo:
InterContinental Chicago O’Hare offers a unique cultural experience that sets it apart from most in the hospitality industry. “The ‘Art Museo’ concept showcases the hotel’s embrace of the arts – sculpture, canvas, architecture, photography, and music – enhancing our guests’ stay and fueling a passion for experiencing culture,” says InterContinental Chicago O’Hare General Manager Jay Primavera.
From conception, art was at the heart of the InterContinental Chicago O’Hare. The property is essentially a series of exhibition halls with meeting spaces and guest rooms built around it. A stay at InterContinental Chicago O’Hare includes a complimentary education in art. Guests are invited to immerse themselves in the artistic ambiance the hotel provides and are encouraged to roam the hotel to admire original works – some commissioned and some part of rotating exhibits (most available for sale). Complimentary champagne gallery tours by InterContinental Chicago O’Hare dedicated “art concierges” are also available upon request.
Dedication to art does not stop there, as original works also adorn guest halls and rooms. To learn more and to view photos of the Art Museo, visit http://www.icohare.com/Art-Entertainment/Art-Gallery.
The Art Museo at InterContinental Chicago O’Hare
5300 N. River Road
Rosemont, IL 60018