Posted inStreet View

Style invades Navy Pier

In April, a peculiar crowd descended upon Navy Pier, not quite blending in with the spot’s usual and more conventionally dressed clientele. Tourists and local visitors sporting accidental normcore shared the looong path to Festival Hall with EXPO Chicago attendees, who never disappoint in serving the latest fashions.  Celebrating its tenth anniversary, it is fair […]

Posted inArt Feature

Spell casting

A sigil is a symbol believed to have supernatural powers. In Simiya, an Islamic branch of occult practice, letters and numbers are arranged into sigils in order to conjure up metaphysical powers, like the ability to fly or to disappear. Artist Maryam Taghavi has long been drawn to these sigils, and other magic-imbued symbols, ornamented […]

Posted inArts & Culture

Finding billboards

To see “OVERRIDE,” I had to really look hard for billboards.  “OVERRIDE” has been a public art program of EXPO Chicago since 2016, extending the reach of the art fair beyond Navy Pier’s Festival Hall to different locales of the city. “Override,” literally, is an industry term that indicates the continuation of an outdoor advertising […]

Posted inArts & Culture

Mie Kongo, in profile

The tenth edition of EXPO is upon us, and since its reinvention at Navy Pier, I’ve covered nine of them. I love EXPO; it’s the art equivalent of binge-watching the entire first season of Yellowjackets in a single day. It’s funny, scary, disgusting, uplifting, and shamelessly melodramatic. And like ten hours of your life hazily […]

Posted inArts & Culture

What’s fair about art fairs?

What’s fair about art fairs? That’s the question at the heart of Barely Fair, a show organized by Garfield Park gallery Julius Caesar that’s designed to run in tandem with the international art fair EXPO Chicago. Founded in 2019, this is the second iteration of the Barely Fair, which quietly marks EXPO’s return to in-person […]