Get Your Aesthetics in Gear: Explore 100 Years of Art in Two Seasons

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As temperatures drop this fall and winter, Chicagoans can pop into warm and welcoming galleries to discover a variety of art forms generated from 1919 to 2019. For starters, the recent work of Chicagoan Maria Gaspar, among others, is on display in “2019 Chicago Architecture Biennial” at the Chicago Cultural Center through Jan. 5, 2020.

Nearby, The Art Institute of Chicago commemorates the 100th anniversary of Bauhaus with an exhibition showcasing the German art school’s textiles through Feb. 16, 2020. “Weaving Beyond the Bauhaus” features 50 works by artists including Anni Albers, Claire Zeisler, Lenore Tawney, Otti Berger, Gunta Stölzl, Else Regensteiner, Ethel Stein, and Sheila Hicks.

“The relationships and affiliations between artists are elucidated through the juxtaposition of works of art, which makes evident their shared approaches to design, materials, techniques, and forms,” explains Assistant Curator of Textiles Erica Warren.

“Photography + Folk Art: Looking for America in the 1930s” is also on view at the Art Institute through Jan. 19, 2020. The exhibition includes images by Walker Evans, Dorothea Lange, and others whose work reflected major projects launched under President Franklin Roosevelt’s New Deal in 1935.

“Documentary photography and folk art share remarkably parallel trajectories in the 1930s,” notes Curator of Photography Elizabeth Siegel, who organized the show with Elizabeth McGoey, Ann S. and Samuel M. Mencoff Associate Curator of American Decorative Arts. “Although they are seemingly disparate artistic areas, both represent attempts to define American visual identity.”

In conjunction with the “Andy Warhol: From A to B and Back Again” exhibit (slated to open at the Art Institute on Oct. 20), The Albert is offering a Pop Art cocktail. The restaurant is also hosting a Paint & Sip Pop Art Event, in partnership with Museica Sip & Paint, on Oct. 29. Patrons with Art Institute tickets will receive 10 percent off the $60 admission fee.

The Block Museum of Art at Northwestern University presents “Pop América, 1965–1975” through Dec. 8. In addition to featuring the contributions made by Pop icons Roy Lichtenstein and Andy Warhol, the show features work by their female counterparts Marisol and Marta Minujín.

The bilingual exhibition also reframes stereotypes of the movement by bringing together artists from North and South America, as well as the Caribbean. “It feels timely to consider the ways in which ideas, politics and culture have long cross-pollinated across the Americas resulting in innovative and beautiful works of art,” says Ellen Philips Katz Director Lisa Corrin.

Human attempts to control the material world are explored in a satirical way in “Mika Rottenberg: Easypieces” at the Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago, through March 8, 2020. Curated by New Museum’s Margot Norton, the solo exhibition features the artist’s immersive video installation Spaghetti Blockchain and Cosmic Generator as well as her signature kinetic sculptures such as Lips (Study #3), Ponytail (Orange), Ceiling Fan Composition, and Finger which features a long fingernail painted to look like a galaxy.

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Top image: Mika Rottenberg, detail from Spaghetti Blockchain, 2019. © Mika Rottenberg, Courtesy of the artist and Hauser & Wirth.

Lower image: Rug designed by Sheila Hicks, produced by V’SOSKE. 1965 © Courtesy of the Art Institute of Chicago, gift of Sheila Hicks.

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Ms. Arvia is a freelance writer, former filmmaker, artist and Janet-of-all-trades who is pleased to serve as Arts & Culture Editor on our magazine since she’s always been Rebellious.