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Posted inArts & Culture

Eye of the Tagger

THE GRAFFITI SHOW at Randolph Street Gallery, through April 10 Randolph Street Gallery’s “The Graffiti Show: A Hip Hop Phenomenon,” showcases the work of artists whose primary medium is spray paint. It’s an exhibition by artists who work on walls, not canvas, and whose pictures are more frequently regarded as criminal acts than artistic expressions. […]

Posted inArts & Culture

Garage Sale Teasures

CHARLES WIESEN at Tough Gallery, through March 20 Charles Wiesen’s art is full of hand mirrors and coat hangers and mail-order furniture, old kitchen utensils, wooden trays, and little pieces of string. Much of his stuff seems to have been foraged from wholesale outlets, thrift shops, and the depths of closets. It’s art, but it […]

Posted inArts & Culture

Forms to Warm the Heart

A SEQUENCE OF FORMS: SCULPTURE BY ILLINOIS ARTISTS at the Chicago Cultural Center, through March 14, and the Illinois Art Gallery, through March 19 Just when the cold and a chilly economic climate start to make even the hardiest locals skeptical of sticking it out in Chicago, something comes along that warms the heart. For […]

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Change the World. Buy a Sweater

ADVERTISING AND SOCIAL ISSUES: UNITED COLORS OF BENETTON at the Museum of Contemporary Photography It’s the sort of small-business success story Ronald Reagan liked to weave into his talks about the “American spirit.” Originally a family business, organized in 1965 near Treviso, Italy, the clothing retailer Benetton now boasts more than 7,000 shops in 100 […]

Posted inArts & Culture

The Subject Is Horses

DEBORAH BUTTERFIELD at Zolla/Lieberman Gallery Deborah Butterfield has been making the same work of art for more than 15 years. Working humbly in mud and sticks, monumentally in bronze, or–as in eight recent works on view through January 2 at Zolla/Lieberman–in old steel, Butterfield unapologetically explores the emotive potential of a single form. Her subject […]

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Missed Opportunities

ART AT THE ARMORY: OCCUPIED TERRITORY at the Chicago Avenue National Guard Armory At a time when many arts organizations are facing budget cuts and scaling down operations, the Museum of Contemporary Art is making plans to move up in the art world. The MCA heralds its planned sparkling new facility in tony Streeterville as […]

Posted inArts & Culture

All American

LOS ENCUENTROS at the Betty Rymer Gallery of the School of the Art Institute of Chicago Since the earliest days of its life as an industrial center Chicago has pulled people from abroad, first from Europe and the Baltic states, then from Asia, Mexico, the Caribbean, and Central and South America. People of widely diverse […]

Posted inArts & Culture

Andrew Young

ANDREW YOUNG at Betsy Rosenfield Gallery Why paint? It’s slow. It’s expensive. It’s difficult to do well. And in a world of color Xeroxing and MTV, the opulent medium often seems something of an antique, an elegant old sage whose dancing days have passed. Yet perhaps because of its long association with geniuses and kings, […]

Posted inArts & Culture

Decaying Myths

TONY FITZPATRICK AND OBAJI NYAMBI at Lorenzo Rodriguez Gallery Midway between the crumbling Kennedy Expressway and the rough edges of Bucktown, the spare storefront of Lorenzo Rodriguez’s home and gallery glows with carefully placed interior lights. Known about town for his large-scale art-strewn warehouse parties catering to Chicago’s black-leather-jacket bohemia, Rodriguez settled his art interest […]