Hyde Park | Visual Arts

The Belly of “The Beast”

John Preus herds community into HPAC

JOHN PREUS

JOHN PREUS

There is a giant steer inside the Hyde Park Art Center. Its hulking shape sits curled up in one corner of the room, filling it, and its curved spine grazes the second-floor balcony. It peers with subdued curiosity at entering visitors, its head resting languidly above its haunches. A patchwork of speckled gray carpet padding forms its hide, while a tangled skeleton of blonde plywood planks supports it from within. Continue reading

Activism | Visual Arts | Woodlawn

Embodying Fear

"Concealed Carry" at the Experimental Station

Audrey Green, "American Stand-Off."

Audrey Green, “American Stand-Off.”

Inside the Experimental Station, silence is punctuated by the piercing sound of gunshots. As part of its exhibit “Concealed Carry,” the Station has installed a mechanically operated shotgun that fires blanks every time a housefly crosses its path. Continue reading

Mixed Media | Visual Arts

For the Birds

Nora Schultz's "Parottree – Building for Bigger than Real"

TOM VAN EYNDE

TOM VAN EYNDE

Nora Schultz describes her exhibition “Parrottree—Building for Bigger than Real” as being about “superstructure,” the set of dominant principles, beliefs, or ideas that arise from more fundamental realities. As she said at a talk during the show’s opening reception, “Parrottree” is “struggling with being under pressure of any kind of superstructure. I am trying to deal with it, trying to hack the system.”  Continue reading

Blurbs | Englewood

Out in the Cold

Though its struggle for donations continues, Clara's Place marches on

MAGGIE SIVIT

MAGGIE SIVIT

During the penultimate week of October, temperatures in Chicago fell to unseasonable lows, sending many of the city’s residents into the heated refuge of their homes. Nineteen women and twenty-three children in Englewood, however, were afforded no such luxury. Save for a few spare blankets and space heaters, the residents of Clara’s Place, a thirteen-unit housing complex for homeless women and children, endured the week without heat.  Continue reading

Pilsen | Visual Arts

Roxaboxen: An Obituary

EMMA COLLINS

EMMA COLLINS

Roxaboxen Exhibitions, a Pilsen art space and an integral element of Chicago’s burgeoning DIY art scene, closed on Friday, November 1, after four years in the neighborhood. The gallery is survived by Roxaboxen’s five former tenants, who all plan to continue their artistic pursuits in new locations. Continue reading

Pilsen | Stage & Screen

Nightmare on 21st Street

ISABEL OCHOA GOLD

ISABEL OCHOA GOLD

If it weren’t for the small group of people shivering in the half-light outside of a brick building in Pilsen, a passerby might miss the Roxaboxen art gallery entirely. Beyond the crowd, glass double doors ushered guests into a dimly lit entryway, illuminated only by the infernal glow of a satanic shrine that sat in the corner of the room. Handwritten paper signs taped haphazardly to the walls invited visitors out of this eerie interstitial space and into a cramped hallway darkened by sheaths of black fabric. But what waited for them beyond? Continue reading