September 11, 2016

2016: Recent History, News & Gossip @ Opening Weekend

Over the course of the following week (September 11-18, 2016) I hope to synthesize an article that is revelatory of the zeitgeist in Chicago's art world. As my schedule allows I'll write and edit live on the blog, rather than preparing the piece prior to publication. Expect progress to be sporadic. Help me by leaving a relevant comment, contacting me through Twitter, or sending e-mail. Please do interpret the following text in relation to the "Leaving Chicago" (( series, the "New American Paintings: Midwest Edition" (( review, and last year's edition of "Recent History, News & Gossip" (( As always, I apologize for errors and omissions. And thank you for reading.


--> Lisa Kuivinen, aged 20, an undergraduate student at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago (SAIC), was lost on Milwaukee Avenue in Chicago on August 16, 2016: ((

--> Virginia Aberle, aged 29, an artist and participant in ACRE Residency and Arts of Life, was lost on the Mississippi River in Wisconsin on August 3, 2016: ((

--> Kevin M. Jennings, aged 36, a student, mentor, artist, and lab specialist at the University of Illinois at Chicago (UIC), was lost in June of 2016: ((

--> Jeriah Hildwine, aged 36, an artist and past instructor at Malcom X Community College, Wright Community Community College, LillStreet Art Center, and the Hyde Park Art Center, was lost on the San Francisco Peaks in north central Arizona in September of 2015: ((

--> Deborah Boardman, aged 57, an artist and Adjunct Associate Professor at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago, was lost at her home in the Edgewater neighborhood of Chicago in November of 2015: ((

Independent curator Jessica Cochran organized a sort of memorial exhibition for Boardman at Heaven Gallery, which ran January 29 - March 13, 2016: ((

Boardman's own website appears to have vanished from the web, which ought to be of interest.

--> Marianne Deson, aged 89, founder of the eponymous gallery, noted for her charitable works and connection to Ed Paschke, was lost at her home in Chicago in September of 2015: ((

--> Lois Weisberg, aged 90, Commissioner of Cultural Affairs for the City of Chicago from 1989-2011, was lost on January 13, 2016: ((

See "Six Degrees of Lois Weisberg," by Malcolm Gladwell, for an interesting take on Weisberg's influence: ((

--> Sidney Block, aged 91, co-founder of Printworks Gallery, was lost on November 25, 2015: ((


--> Peter Taub announced that he was stepping down as head of MCA Chicago's Performance Programs on June 3, 2016: ((

One can't help but be reminded of Chris Jones' criticism published on September 19, 2014: ((

--> Omar Kholeif was named Senior Curator at MCA Chicago, to begin on November 23, 2015: ((

--> James Rondeau was named as the new President and Director of the Art Institute of Chicago in January of 2016: ((

In the 32-year period from 1972-2004 the Art Institute of Chicago had only two directors: E. Laurence Chalmers and James N. Wood. Beginning with Wood, in the 12-year period from 2004-2016 the Art Institute of Chicago has had four different directors: Wood, James Cuno (2004-2011), Douglas Druick (2011-2015), and now Rondeau.

--> Hamza Walker, 22-year veteran of the Renaissance Society, will become Executive Director of LAXART on October 1, 2016: ((

In February of 2015 Walker embarked upon a two-year leave of absence from his role as Associate Curator and Director of Education at the University of Chicago's Renaissance Society, concentrating on his duties as co-curator of the “Made in L.A. 2016” biennial at the Hammer Museum: ((

--> Julie Rodrigues Widholm left the MCA Chicago after 16 years to become director and chief curator at the DePaul Art Museum: (( ((

Widholm succeeds the DePaul Art Museum's associate director Laura Fatemi, who functioned as interim director for a year-long period (2014-2015) following the departure of past director Louise Lincoln, who retired after 17 years: (( ((

Widholm recently hired Mia Lopez as assistant curator, and Laura-Caroline Johnson as collection and exhibition manager: ((,-collection-and-exhibition-manager.aspx))


--> Jason Foumberg, SAIC alumnus, left Newcity after having been variously employed as a contributing writer, art editor, and associate editor, over a ten-year period.

--> Mia DiMeo, SAIC alumna, left Carol Fox & Associates as a public relations account executive, after having been employed there for nearly four years.

--> Gapers Block A/C (arts and culture) closed, the on-line magazine reporting that it was "on indefinite hiatus" beginning January 1, 2016: ((


--> 65GRAND and ADDS DONNA galleries have both relocated to 3252 W. North Ave. in Chicago, IL. And their inaugural shows open from 6:00-9:00 PM on Friday, September 16, 2016: (( ((

--> Rhona Hoffman celebrates forty years as an art dealer--from her 1976 partnership with Donald Young to her eponymous gallery today--in Chicago.

Find an interview with Hoffman conducted by MCA Chicago Senior Curator Omar Kholeif in the current issue of Newcity: ((

See the first in a series of three exhibitions celebrating Hoffman's 40-year history in Chicago when it opens from 5:00-7:30 PM on September 16, 2016: ((

--> Linda Warren Projects lost long-term employee Chris Smith. Subsequently, Natalia Ferreyra joined Linda Warren Projects as its new Director, having left her position with The Mission gallery. Robin Dluzen left Linda Warren Projects for the Ukrainian Institute of Modern Art, where she now holds the title Exhibitions and Operations Manager.

--> Andrew Rafacz Gallery (and Chicago) lost past Director Emma Robbins to Los Angeles, California: ((

--> Trunk Show--the Ford Taurus turned mobile exhibition platform operated by Raven Falquez Munsell and Jesse Malmed--announced that its final exhibition was scheduled for October 2, 2016: ((


--> Anne Elizabeth Moore announced in April of 2016 that--after nearly 23 years in Chicago--she was moving to "Write A House" in Detroit: ((

(September 18, 2016, has come and gone. And I still have a significant amount of material to add. So, I'll update as possible over the coming week. Thanks.)