The Five

In addition to the MCA’s blockbuster Jeff Koons show, five other don’t-miss exhibitions making plenty of noise


Peg by Ben Gest

So much for summer’s being the art world’s quiet season. In addition to the MCA’s blockbuster Jeff Koons show, we’ve found five other don’t-miss exhibitions making plenty of noise.

Maria Tomasula
The New York Times said her magic realist paintings “could not be less cool"—a critique that’s made them even hotter. Then again, Tomasula can outpaint just about anybody. June 6–Aug 23 at Zolla/Lieberman, 325 W Huron. 312-944-1990.

Ben Gest
Gest’s color photos show us elegant images of ordinary people doing mundane things, without quite letting us enter the scene. That alluring aloofness is strangely compelling. Thru June 28 at Stephen Daiter, 311 W Superior, fourth floor. 312-787-3350.

Evanston and Vicinity Biennial
Decades ago, regional exhibitions juried by prestigious figures were major events. Few such competitions remain, but this one brings out the best in local talent. June 1–July 6 at Evanston Art Center, 2603 Sheridan Rd, Evanston. 847-475-5300.

Henry Darger
Enter the visionary world of the prolific recluse, whose tiny Lincoln Park live/work space is re-created here, alongside a portion of his astonishing body of work. Thru June 28 at Intuit, 756 N Milwaukee. 312-243-9088.

Collecting for Chicago
The Art Institute’s prints and drawings collections are certainly not the most often visited in the museum, but they’re among the most fascinating. This show gives a sense of how several Chicago collectors have been instrumental in bringing the best works on paper to the city. June 14–Sep 14 at the Art Institute, 111 S Michigan. 312-443-3600.


Photography: Ben Gest, Peg, 2008 / Courtesy of Stephen Daiter Gallery

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6 years ago
Posted by Anonymous

It's so wonderful to read about the 19th Evanston Biennial, it has had very little press in the Chicago Land area.

The exhibiton is firt class and the art is contemporary and powerful. Some of the artists are well know, like Kevin Lucero Less, while others are next to hit the scene of, "New Important Chicago area Artists".

Please come out to see the works, time is ticking.

George Freed - Evanston, IL.

6 years ago
Posted by Anonymous

I couldn't agree with you more Mr. Freed. I'm getting up there in age, however I deeply enjoy the art works in contemporary category. Photography has always been a favorite of mine, and Larry Chait , Kevin Lucero Less and Eric Holubow collectively, have produced art works telling of deep sadness. I found it very personal. I'm inspired now to make my own art, suppose that's what a good exhibition should do.

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