Weekend Arts Guide (1/23-1/26 2020)
Image Credit: TTFN (Ta-Ta for Now) by Christina Ivelisse Morris, as seen in Cuffing at Jackson Junge Gallery. Cuffing opens this weekend.
No matter the weather, it's sure to be an interesting weekend in the arts of Wicker Park and Bucktown as the next few days see several exciting new exhibition openings and interesting happenings, workshops, and events! We've got everything you need to know to stay warm and dry with the company of art in our latest WPB Weekend Arts Guide...
No Nation Art Gallery and Tangential Unspace Lab + Smudge Cinema Projects
Set it Off (F. Gary Gray, 1996)
Set it Off (F. Gary Gray, 1996) is a look at what happens when you need something that's going to really set it off with. Or when Girls Trip, Juice, and The L Word have a baby. With a pre-Smith Jada Pinkett.
6:22pm to 8:55pm
Self-Care Through Moon Magic
Did you know a woman's cycle each month is akin to the moon's? A normal "healthy" cycle is 28 to 30 days. The moon's is 29 and a half. And that's just the surface. As one looks deeper into how women and the cycles of the moon are intimately and innately connected magic ensues...Each participant of this workshop will go home with their very own 2020 moon calendar as well as an understanding of how to use it. The workshop will be covering topics such as: the cycles of the moon, women's monthly cycles, the seasons of those cycles, and how it is all connected as well as how to use this information and these tools to go deeper into self-understanding and create a healthier self-care practice. Please not that this is a woman's body centered workshop but all are welcome. Also, please bring a mug for tea! Tickets available online.
7:00pm to 9:00pm
Am I Man Enough? Stories on Toxic Masculinity
Integrating personal narrative with social critique, Am I Man Enough? is the show where people tell personal stories to critically examine the culture of toxic masculinity and the construction of masculinity and manhood. Thursday's great lineup includes Jolie Evans, Tony Mendoza, Yasmine Yaz Tad, Jess White, Devin Whitlock, Joy Wright, and Rivka Yeker. You don't want to miss these tellers. They have important stories to share: about social conditioning, about the ideology of hegemonic masculinity, about their own struggles conforming to as well as resisting against it. Am I Man Enough? is for people with important stories to tell. The event is produced and hosted by Ada Cheng, a professor-turned storyteller, solo performer, and storytelling producer. She has been featured in storytelling shows and done her two solo performances all over the country. Her motto: Make your life the best story you tell.
7:30pm to 9:00pm
MCM Fine Framing: A Look Behind the Curtain
Firecat Projects presents a collection of artwork by the workers behind the scenes at MCM Fine Framing. Exhibiting artists include Harvey Hayes, Ryan Quigley, Gildelgar Sanchez, Matthew Schommer, Wes Smith, and Gabriel Villa.
Opening Reception 7:00pm to 10:00pm
Bright Sense Sound Meditation
The Bright Sense Sound Meditation is a session of 45 minutes aimed at a fresh approach to meditation and healing. Todd Mattei will host and perform live music and sound for participants. The music is aimed not only at relaxation, but at enlivening the imagination and stimulating memory. People interested in electronic, experimental, or ambient musics are encouraged to attend. There is no spiritual or secular dogma driving the event, though you may bring whatever belief or philosophy you’re currently working with. The meditation aims in an opposing direction, towards a non-dogmatic embrace of the free imagination. If you tend to recoil from the more saccharine modes of new age music, certain yoga CDs, and the music the bank plays when you are on hold, this event is safe. Host Todd Mattei is a musician and artist residing in Chicago. His practice has included music, animation, video, and collaborative music/dance performance.
7:30pm to 8:30pm
Jackson Junge Gallery
With the Holidays and New Year in the rear view mirror, we find ourselves in the midst of Cuffing Season! Cuffing, Jackson Junge Gallery’s first group exhibition of 2020, pays homage to this cultural phenomenon. The seemingly millennial occurrence fools no one...since the dawn of time, couples have turned to each other for warmth, comfort and seasonal fun when the days grow darker and colder. Urban Dictionary defines “cuffing” as the moment when “people who would normally rather be single or promiscuous find themselves, along with the rest of the world, desiring to be tied down by a serious relationship.” Cuffing explores these desires and exposes the intimacy and inevitable end to this “thirsty” time of year. The exhibition features artworks by sixteen artists around the United States including Alvin Black III, Michael Coakes, David Decesaris, Anita Frazier, J. Allen Hyde, Kurt Kreissl, Kenneth Marier, James Mesple, Christina Ivelisse Morris, Juan Arango Palacios, Darrin Patton, Karen Remsen, Samuel Schwindt, K Smith, Allan Teger, and Benjye Troob.
Opening Reception 6:00pm to 10:00pm
Zine Club Chicago: No Sleep 'Til Stapling Zinemaking Hangout!
The folks at Quimby's know that making progress on your zine projects is probably one of your new year’s resolutions, so Zine Club Chicago is kicking off 2020 with a special event: The No Sleep ’Til Stapling Zinemaking Hangout! Bring your work-in-progress, create a new zine on the spot, or just catch up with other zine folks at this 4-hour Friday night event. The shop will have zinemaking supplies, creative prompts, and lots of snacks on hand. Zinemakers are encouraged to bring their zines to swap with others, as well! The zinemaking party keeps rolling from a while, so feel free to drop in anytime during the evening. Zine newbies and longtime enthusiasts alike are always welcome at Zine Club Chicago, the city’s only book club-style event for people who read zines.
6:00pm to 10:00pm
Video Game Art Gallery
System Link: Video Game as Memoir
Video games have historically been a product catered to the player. A focus on engagement, replayability, and general entertainment value has guided design strategies that create impersonal pieces, appealing to the widest range of players possible. While film, music, writing, and other media have historically been vehicles of memoir and personal storytelling, games often maintain a trajectory as products of their audience and not their creator. The voices of the individual artists have recently begun to break through the standards of generalization in the medium, creating stories where players are able to experience the emotional perspectives of the creator. In doing so memoir games reveal that assumptions about the general audience skew toward specific perspectives, and exclude others. VGA Gallery's first exhibition of 2020 seeks to highlight those works, exploring how a range of game makers and artists have translated their personal experiences into the interactive context. Each work is designed to allow the player to understand, empathize with, and connect to other lived realities, using the participatory advantages of video games to express a story as no other medium can. The different projects showcased in System Link: Video Game as Memoir offer different answers to the question “What happens when you let the player of games into your story?”
Opening Reception 6:00pm to 9:00pm
Toy de Jour: Vintage, Toys, Arts & Farts
Grand Re-Opening Party: Same Trash, Bigger Store
Come christen the new space with the folks at Toy de Jour, because they did it--they tricked another landlord to let them put all their farts in a larger space. So now they're gonna let you come in and look at how poorly they've set everything up initially and party with them. Seriously y'all, they have so much space now! The storage area in the back--and that alone--is literally the size of their old space. Yeah of course there'll be Doritos, a weird Oreo flavor, they'll order pizza, and all the regular stuff--but you guys...Bruiser Queen is gonna play the opening! And the whole crazy thing is sponsored by Revolution Brewing. And the shop's new BBFs at Logan Arcade are gonna invite everyone down the street for an after party when Toy de Jour decides to kick you all out! They can't wait to prove to y'all that more than 12 people can fit in their shop at once now! Let's piss off the upstairs tenant!! RAP HOOOORN! RA-RA-RA-RA-RAP HOOORN!!!!!
7:00pm to 11:30pm
Morning Will Come: Billy Lombardo Book Launch & Reading
Join Volumes for the launch of Billy Lombardo's novel Morning Will Come, at one of the very best indie bookstores in Chicago. Billy will share a little from his novel; Gina Frangello, author of A Life in Men and Every Kind of Wanting, will host a conversation with Billy; and then much celebrating will ensue. Lombardo is the author of The Logic of a Rose: Chicago Stories, The Man with Two Arms, and Meanwhile, Roxy Mourns. His recent work has been published in Hypertext Magazine, Ireland’s HCE Review, The Tishman Review, Tikkun Magazine, The Chicago Reader, The Chicago Tribune, and Triquarterly. Frangello is the author of four books of fiction and a forthcoming memoir, Blow Your House Down. Her novel A Life in Men is currently under development by Netflix as a series starring Kristen Stewart and produced by Charlize Theron’s production company, Denver & Delilah.
7:00pm to 8:30pm
Agitator Co-operative Gallery
Texas Two-Step Dance Class & Workshop
Put on your boots and come learn the basic Texas Two-Step with some spins and dips. Caitlin Rafferty and J.B. Duckett will be teaching a basic refresher on the two-step, then move on to teaching more advance turns, spins and dips. The workshop will have a donation-based beer and wine bar. Space is limited to 30 attendees, so reserve your tickets here or pay $13 at the door.
6:00pm to 8:00pm
No Nation Art Gallery and Tangential Unspace Lab
Bare Feet in Flux With a Tempest of Flying Viscous Half Bricks
No Nation Art Gallery and Tangential Unspace Lab presenst Bare Feet in Flux With a Tempest of Flying Viscous Half Bricks–an afternueving of/with performance featuring Lil Cursor, Justin D'Acci, Leila Ghasempor, Chia Chung Huang, Josef Olivier, Maria Plotnikova, Izah Ransohoff, Jason Roth, Simone Whiteley-Allen, and more.
6:18pm to 10:22pm
AdventureLand Works on Paper
Chase the Ace by Yulia Kuznetsova
AdventureLand's first exhibitions of the year is Chase the Ace, a solo show by artist Yulia Kuznetsova!
Agitator Co-operative Gallery
nothing is about us without us: The Art of Harm Reduction
Agitator's first exhibition of the year is also a fundraiser for the Chicago Recover Alliance. CRA is a racially and ethnically diverse group composed of people living with HIV and drug use, working in addiction treatment, healthcare, education, law and other assorted areas. CRA is unique as an organization in that our work entails building one-on-one relationships with individuals affected by HIV and drug use and provide them with a wide array of options for achieving any positive change as they define it for themselves. CRA is an organization for those interested in directly serving, supporting, educating and advocating with others for reducing drug related harm.
On The Beach: John Soss
The Dime's first exhibition of the year is On The Beach, a solo show featuring John Soss. As the artists tells it, "what began as a series of stark, poorly lit, haphazardly arranged photographs of frosted glass evolved over time into more wide-ranging documents of things I’ve found and catalogued from beaches surrounding Lake Michigan...Once the picture is taken and posted I dismantle the layout, stash the good pieces, toss a bunch of it, recycle a portion and then start over again the next day. Nothing is permanent."
Firefly Fiber Arts Studio
The True North Creative Trunk Show
Firefly is excited to be hosting another trunk show of The True North Creative Yarn! This indie dyer is out of Mississauga, Canada, creating beautiful variegated, speckled, and self stripping yarn! The trunk show will run to the end of January and feature the dyer's winter yarn collection.
Syd Veverka: Stop Complaining and Kiss Me!
Gallery Café presents Stop Complaining and Kiss Me!, a complete take-over by artist Syd Veverka. Veverka's colorful abstracts and playful imagery are encapsulated by her murals, tables, porcelain animals, paintings on canvas and drywall, and varied artistic output on exhibition.
Circle Within a Square
LVL3 presents Circle Within a Square, a two-person exhibition featuring Bernadette Despujols and Brittney Leeanne Williams. Despujols’ violent, painterly style confronts contemporary mythologies of women while Williams’ transcendent use of deep red nods to generational and embodied feminine roles. Williams’ paintings feature black women prominently in the composition, blending foreground and background, landscape and subject. The bodies are bent: their postures suggest a state of rest, a burden carried, lovemaking, being anchored. Williams uses these figures and their positionality to reference her own relationship to family history while at the same time speaking about chronicled female characters such as Naomi and Ruth from the Book of Ruth. Despujol’s sculptures and paintings speak about the female body in today’s cultural and social contexts, questioning and embracing notions of objectification and intimacy. Despujol’s compositions depict naked sitting female-bodied figures in their home, on a bed or sitting on a man’s lap; forcing a viewer to question whether the scene depicted is intrusive or empowering. Similarly lonely and internal, Despujol’s interruptions of objects and furniture designed for the body are transfigured to become the body in question. Bending, sitting, propped on chairs or inside a vast landscape, Despujols and Williams’ figures disrupt space through their dynamic expressions of womanhood.
Little Broken Things
Year One: Halftone Projects Anniversary Exhibition
Little Broken Things is excited to announce their current art show with Chicago-based Halftone Projects, a second bedroom turned print studio run by Victoria Marie Barquin. Located in Logan Square, Halftone Projects publishes prints for artists and January is their anniversary! This exhibition features all of the work they’ve made in their first year of programming, which includes collaborations with Colleen Hardison, Nicole Del Rio, Haejin Lee, and Catherine Martzloff.
First Last In Between
New work by Sam, Tom, and Adrian.
Roots & Culture
Beyond Reach: Selva Aparicio & Valentina Zamfirescu + Onyx Engobar: Use of the Erotic as Power: A Self Study in Black Myths & Black Eroticism in the Window
Roots & Culture is pleased to present Beyond Reach, an exhibition that pairs artists Selva Aparicio and Valentina Zamfirescu who reflect on the (im)possibility of corporeal touch. In Beyond Reach, viewers near physical bodies and their memory-images yet true connection continually evades; multiple layers of material and technological intervention block the path and problematize skin-to-skin contact. Selva Aparicio gives meaning to the neglected, finds beauty in peril, and empowers her gathered materials to raise questions on mourning, death and fragility. Aparicio has covered an entire room with concrete tiles cast from impressions of human cadavers, inviting viewers to touch and intimately experience the crevices of skin frozen in metamorphosis from living to dead. Valentina Zamfirescu’s sculptural installations likewise center around bodies and mediate corporeal experiences of the world. Working primarily with digital technologies, Zamfirescu brings back suppressed personal memories and stages them in virtual reality or through digital print. While Zamfirescu’s most recent work employs VR, her virtual environments always exist within an installation and employ sculptural elements to direct and constantly pull viewers back to their occupied body. Interwoven together as a two-person exhibition, Selva Aparicio’s and Valentina Zamfirescu’s meticulously crafted installations reference a universality of being and distill our strongest, most human connections as material and digital form.
No Nation Art Gallery and Tangential Unspace Lab + Smudge Cinema Projects: Set it Off (F. Gargy Gray, 1996) - 6:22pm to 8:55pm
Sideshow Gallery: Self-Care Through Moon Magic - 7:00pm to 9:00pm
Volumes Bookcafe: Am I Man Enough? Stories on Toxic Masculinity - 7:30pm to 9:00pm
Firecat Projects: MFM Fine Framing: A Look Behind the Curtain - opening reception 7:00pm to 10:00pm
Heaven Gallery: Bright Sense Sound Meditation - 7:30pm to 8:30pm
Jackson Junge Gallery: Cuffing - opening reception 6:00pm to 10:00pm
Quimby's Bookstore: Zine Club Chicago: No Sleep 'Til Stapling Zinemaking Hangout! - 6:00pm to 10:00pm
Video Game Art Gallery: System Link: Video Game as Memoir - opening receptoin 6:00pm to 9:00pm
Toy de Jour: Vintage, Toys, Arts & Farts: Grand Re-Opening Party: Same Trash, Bigger Store - 7:00pm to 11:30pm
Volumes Bookcafe: Morning Will Come: Billy Lombardo Book Launch & Reading - 7:00pm to 8:30pm
Agitator Co-operative Gallery: Texas Two-Step Dance Class & Workshop - 6:00pm to 8:00pm
No Nation Art Gallery and Tangential Unspace Lab: Bare Feet in Flux With a Tempest of Flying Viscous Half Bricks - 6:18pm to 10:22pm
AdventureLand Works on Paper: Chase the Ace by Yulia Kuznetsova
Agitator Co-operative Gallery: nothing is about us without us: The Art of Harm Reduction
The Dime: On The Beach: John Soss
Firefly Fiber Arts Studio: The True North Creative Trunk Show
Gallery Café: Syd Ververka: Stop Complaining and Kiss Me!
LVL3 Gallery: Circle Within a Square
Little Broken Things: Year One: Halftone Projects Anniversary Exhibition
Rainbo Club: First Last In Between
Roots & Culture: Beyond Reach: Selva Aparicio & Valentina Zamfirescu with Onyx Engobar: Use of the Erotix as Power: A Self Study in Black Myths & Black Eroticism in the Window