Visual Arts

Mixed Media and Clear Messaging

Cross Currents / Intercambio Cultural at the Smart Museum bears the fruit of an artistic exchange between the United States and Cuba

Michael Tropea (Courtesy Smart Museum of Art)

Ditching the usual museum opening wine and cheese platter soirée for food trucks and live music, the Smart Museum of Art hosted a summer cookout earlier this month in conjunction with the opening of its new exhibit with the National Museum of Mexican Art, “Cross Currents / Intercambio Cultural.” Featuring tacos, alcohol, and (((SONORAMA))), a Chicago based DJ collective known to spin classic Latin tunes, it was the perfect summer day to host an outdoor event. The reception, on the lawn outside the Smart building on the University of Chicago campus, drew a large crowd to the opening. Featuring works of twelve artists, six based in Chicago and six in Havana, the east gallery of the museum showcases a range of mediums—from performance to printmaking—all dealing with personal histories, collective memories, and the archive.

Food | Food Issue 2019 | McKinley Park

Classic Cakes, New Space

McKinley Park's Kristoffer's Cakes

Asia Babiuk

Looking for a place to order a custom cake for your best friend’s birthday or your grandparents’ anniversary? Well-known and well-loved for their fluffy tres leches cakes, which come in a variety of flavors, Kristoffer’s Cakes should top your list. For those unfamiliar, tres leches is a type of sponge cake made without butter, which results in a cake that’s full of holes and dry enough to be soaked in three types of milk (evaporated, condensed, and heavy cream) to give it texture.

Radio | Visual Arts

The Language of Exhibition

David Maljković and Karsten Lund on crafting "Also on View" for the Renaissance Society

Useful Art Services

The Renaissance Society is a contemporary art space at the University of Chicago that has a very strong character when it comes to architectural design. Artist David Maljković describes it as a “monumental space that is one dimensional with a really particular condition of light.” The vinyl floors are so present—not concrete or plastic—they are tactile. Known for his collaborative approach to curation and attention to details, Maljković worked with Renaissance Society curator Karsten Lund for the exhibit “Also on View,” to select works that complement the space. The Weekly’s Manisha AR sat down with both artist and curator to go behind the scenes of the exhibit and talk about the ways in which the space inspired the show. You can read the review of the show here.

Arts Issue 2019 | Visual Arts


Profiles of eleven South Side spaces

Angeliki Tsoli

The South Side, which has a rich history of contributions to the visual arts, has been gaining recognition in recent years for its experimental, emerging, and DIY-style of artists and art making. Often bringing lesser known artists and styles into the fray, these new spaces challenge traditional notions of what a gallery is with their wide-ranging programming, choice of artists, and remarkable use of space. For this piece, the Weekly visited and spoke to a selection of makers and art spaces spread across the South Side.

Radio | Visual Arts

Look, Don’t Touch

"Also on View" at the Renaissance Society

Useful Art Services

Do you ever wonder about the little things that inspire an artist to create a body of work? Everyone has a process. David Maljković’s exhibit “Also on View” offers viewers a chance to explore that process. The exhibition borrows its name from the same term used by museums to promote smaller or ongoing shows—the phrase “Also on View” applies to shows that aren’t the main draw in the museum, while still encouraging visitors to explore them. Except you would think that Maljković’s work is the main attraction, right?

Visual Arts

Art and Investigation

Shadi Habib Allah’s exhibition at the Renaissance Society keeps you guessing

Courtesy of the Renaissance Society

The installation “70 Days Behind Inventory” is a jigsaw puzzle of brown and beige vinyl tiles arranged on a raised wooden platform to represent the floor from a corner store in Miami’s Liberty City neighborhood. The floor is stained and the image of what appears to be a beverage can is printed on the tiles. A yellow bulb overhead creates a pool of light in the center of this piece by multidisciplinary artist Shadi Habib Allah. This 750-square-foot installation is part of an exhibit entitled “Put To Rights” at the University of Chicago’s Renaissance Society gallery (The Ren, colloquially).