Psst! There’s Art in #4A

In turning their living rooms into exhibition spaces, some young entrepreneurs are bridging the gap between elite West Loop galleries and the emerging art scene. “It forces me to mop more,” says Katie Rashid, explaining the downside of opening an art gallery in her apartment. The upside? For an aspiring gallerist with an eye for talent: a business opportunity—plus an excuse to throw some of the best parties in town.

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PATRICIA COURSON AND RACHEL ADAMS

Courson (left), 24, and Adams, 25, met at the Art Institute; last year, they converted Courson’s second-floor Wicker Park apartment into the gallery Lloyd Dobler.

Where: The gallery is actually Courson’s front living room, which overlooks Division Street, plus the entryway nook and hallway (for installation pieces), and the kitchen. “We’re going to get an intern this summer who we’ll make sit here and clean,” says Adams.

Day jobs: Courson is an assistant at Bucket Rider Gallery; Adams is a photo archivist. Says Courson: “I’ll sit at work with my cell phone next to my work phone, answering one, ‘Hi, Lloyd Dobler,’ and the other, ‘Hello, Bucket Rider.’”

That name: Lloyd Dobler is John Cusack’s character from the 1989 teen love-and-angst film Say Anything. “We wanted to embody this young spirit,” says Courson.

Memorable moment: A “coloring party,” complete with a homemade coloring book filled with friends’ quirky drawings, mazes, and connect-the-dots pages, and a ten-foot glass-top picnic table made by the Mighty Bearcats, a Chicago-based design collective. “We probably had at least 100 people stop by that night,” Courson says.

Up now: Large paper installations by Natalia Ivancevich, an Art Institute grad, and Cynthia Muir, a Columbia College alum, through June 16th.

On the horizon: A summer solstice video screening and an art scavenger hunt in July. “There’ll be art installed around the neighborhood which, hopefully, will become permanent pieces,” Adams says. “We’re really into street art.”

Catch them: 1545 W. Division St., second floor; 312-961-8706. Open Tuesdays and Thursdays from 5 to 9 p.m., Saturdays from noon to 5 p.m.

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