ART21 Season 8 Preview
Artists: Nick Cave, Theaster Gates, Barbara Kasten and Chris Ware
Adriane Little, organizer
Begining October 17, 2016 at 10:00 a.m. through October 24 at 10:00 a.m. the Frostic School of Art will participate in Art21 Access '16 by previewing Season 8, Episode: Chicago, of the PBS Art21 series. Episode - Chicago will be on running on the plasma panels on the 1st and 2nd floor in the Atrium Gallery of the Richmond Center for Visual Arts.
This event is part of Art21 Access '16, an international screening initiative that provides opportunities to increase knowledge of contemporary art, ignite dialogue, and inspire creative thinking through hundreds of public screenings and events in celebration of the premiere of the eighth season of the Peabody Award-winning television series, Art:21—Art in the Twenty-First Century.
The event is free and open to the public.
Chicago is a city rooted in industry and towering architecture, and artists in Chicago are disrupting urban experience through experimentation.
Nick Cave (b.1959, Fulton, MO, USA) creates “Soundsuits”—surreally majestic objects blending fashion and sculpture—that originated as metaphorical suits of armor in response to the Rodney King beatings and have evolved into vehicles for empowerment. Theaster Gates (b.1973, Chicago, IL, USA) first encountered creativity in the music of Black churches on his journey to becoming an urban planner, potter, and artist. Gates creates sculptures out of clay, tar, and renovated buildings, transforming the raw material of the South Side into radically reimagined vessels of opportunity for the community. Barbara Kasten (b.1936, Chicago, IL, USA) makes photographs and video projections in her studio that evoke an experience of movement through modernist architecture. Chris Ware (b.1967, Omaha, NE, USA), known for his New Yorker magazine covers, is hailed as a master of the comic art form. Ware’s complex graphic novels, which tell stories about people in suburban midwestern neighborhoods, poignantly reflect on the role of memory in constructing identity.
Nick Cave was born in Fulton, Missouri in 1959. He creates “Soundsuits”—surreally majestic objects blending fashion and sculpture—that originated as metaphorical suits of armor in response to the Rodney King beatings and have evolved into vehicles for empowerment. Fully concealing the body, the “Soundsuits” serve as an alien second skin that obscures race, gender, and class, allowing viewers to look without bias towards the wearer’s identity. Cave regularly performs in the sculptures himself, dancing either before the public or for the camera, activating their full potential as costume, musical instrument, and living icon. The artist also works with choreographers, dancers, and amateur performers to produce lavish community celebrations in untraditional venues for art. Dazzling in their movement, Cave’s sculptures are crafted in collaboration with artisans from a dizzying array of materials that include beads, raffia, buttons, sequins, twigs, fur, and fabric. The “Soundsuits” are also displayed in exhibitions as static sculptures, arranged as groups of figures in formation that are striking in their diversity and powerful stance. Cave’s sculptures also include non-figurative assemblages, intricate accumulations of found objects that project out from the wall, and installations enveloping entire rooms.
Nick Cave attended the Cranbrook Academy of Art (MFA, 1989), North Texas State University (1984-86), and the Kansas City Art Institute (BFA, 1982). Cave’s awards and residencies include the Joan Mitchell Foundation Award (2008), Artadia Award (2006), Joyce Award (2006), Creative Capital Grant (2004, 2002), and a Louis Comfort Tiffany Foundation Award (2001). Cave has had major exhibitions at MASS MoCA (2016); Cranbrook Art Museum (2015); Saint Louis Art Museum (2014-15); ICA Boston (2014); Denver Art Museum (2013); Fabric Workshop and Museum (2011-12); Seattle Art Museum (2011); and the Yerba Buena Center for the Arts (2009), among others. Cave lives and works in Chicago, IL, USA.
Theaster Gates was born in Chicago in 1973. He first encountered creativity in the music of Black churches on his journey to becoming an urban planner, potter, and artist. Gates creates sculptures with clay, tar, and renovated buildings, transforming the raw material of urban neighborhoods into radically reimagined vessels of opportunity for the community. Establishing a virtuous circle between fine art and social progress, Gates strips dilapidated buildings of their components, transforming those elements into sculptures that act as bonds or investments, the proceeds of which are used to finance the rehabilitation of entire city blocks. Gates’s non-profit, Rebuild Foundation, manages the many projects in his Chicago hometown—including the Stony Island Arts Bank, Black Cinema House, Dorchester Art and Housing Collaborative, Archive House, and Listening House—while extending its support to cities throughout the American Midwest. Many of the artist’s works evoke his African-American identity and the broader struggle for civil rights, from sculptures incorporating fire hoses, to events organized around soul food, and choral performances by the experimental musical ensemble Black Monks of Mississippi, led by Gates himself.
Theaster Gates attended Iowa State University (MS, 2006; BS 1996) and University of Cape Town (MA, 1998). Gates’s awards and residencies include the Kurt Schwitters Prize (2017), American Academy of Arts & Sciences Award (2016); Smithsonian American Ingenuity Award for Social Progress (2015), Artes Mundi Award (2015), honorary doctorates from the San Francisco Art Institute (2015) and the School of the Art Institute of Chicago (2014), Knight Foundation Grant (2014), Creative Capital Grant (2012), United States Artists Fellowship (2012), Graham Foundation Grant (2011), and the Joyce Award (2009). Gates has had major exhibitions at Art Gallery of Ontario (2016); Kunsthaus Bregenz (2016); Istanbul Biennial (2015); Venice Biennale (2015); MCA Chicago (2013); Fabric Workshop and Museum (2013); and Documenta (2012), among others. Theaster Gates lives and works in Chicago, IL, USA.
Barbara Kasten was born in Chicago in 1936. She makes photographs and video projections in her studio that evoke an experience of movement through modernist architecture. While abstract, her work is subversively political, asking viewers to fundamentally question their perceptions. Trained as a sculptor, Kasten began to investigate photography through cyanotypes of fabrics and photograms of objects placed directly on the paper. This led her to photograph elaborate compositions of objects in the studio—such as Platonic shapes, paper, plexiglass, and wire—often illuminated by theatrical lighting and colored gels. When recorded by her large-format camera—and without digital manipulation—Kasten’s arrangements become ambiguous in scale, confusing in spatial dimensions, and uncertain in differentiation between surface, shape, and shadow. On a grander scale, Kasten also pictures architectural spaces and landscapes, manipulating the environment through carefully placed mirrors and dramatic gemlike tones. Kasten’s video projections of rotating objects and planes of drifting color, cast onto building exteriors and interiors, destabilize the architecture through the optical fragmentation of forms.
Barbara Kasten attended California College of Arts and Crafts (MFA, 1970) and University of Arizona, Tucson (BFA, 1959). Kasten has had major exhibitions at MOCA Pacific Design Center (2016); Hammer Museum (2016); Worcester Art Museum (2016); The Graham Foundation (2015); ICA Philadelphia (2015); Künstlerhaus Bethanien, Berlin (2015); Museum of Modern Art, Frankfurt (2015); New Mexico Museum of Art, Santa Fe (2015); Museum of Contemporary Canadian Art, Toronto (2015); Museum of Modern Art, New York (2014); Museum of Fine Arts, Houston (2014); High Museum of Art, Atlanta (2014); Milwaukee Art Museum (2013); MCA Chicago (2013); Smithsonian American Art Museum (2013); LACMA (2012-13); and Kunstverein Nürnberg (2012), among others. Barbara Kasten lives and works in Chicago, IL, USA.
Chris Ware was born in Omaha, Nebraska in 1967. Known for his “New Yorker” magazine covers, he's hailed as a master of the comic art form. Ware’s complex graphic novels tell stories about people in suburban Midwestern neighborhoods, poignantly reflecting on the role memory plays in constructing identity. Stories featuring many of Ware’s protagonists—Quimby the Mouse, Rusty Brown, and Jimmy Corrigan—often first appear in serialized form, in publications such as “The New York Times,” The “Guardian,” or Ware’s own ongoing comic book series “Acme Novelty Library,” before being organized into their own stand-alone books. Experimenting with the form of the novel itself, Ware’s “Building Stories” (which took a decade to complete) is a box set of fourteen printed works in a variety of formats—cloth-bound books, newspapers, pamphlets, and flip books—that can be read in any order. The artist’s hand-drawn, complex compositions unfold time through space in surprising arrangements which include pages entirely absent of words, radical shifts in scale, and characters, locations, and events seen from multiple points of view.
Chris Ware attended the School of the Art Institute of Chicago (1991-93) and the University of Texas at Austin (BFA, 1991). Ware’s awards include the Lynd Ward Graphic Novel Prize (2013), United States Artists Fellowship (2006), Guardian First Book Award (2001) American Book Award (2000), and multiple Eisner Awards, Harvey Awards, and awards from the National Cartoonist’s Society. Ware’s publications have been cited as “best books” by Publisher’s Weekly (2012), the New York Times (2012), Time Magazine (2012), and The Times, London (2009). Ware has had major exhibitions at The Art Institute of Chicago (2014-15); Sheldon Museum of Art (2007); MCA Chicago (2006); Jewish Museum, New York (2006); and the Whitney Biennial (2002), among others. Chris Ware lives and works in Oak Park, IL, USA.