Around Town: Art News

projections on theMart start April 1. No joke. (Photo courtesy of Adler Planetarium)
Adler Planetarium projections on theMart start April 1. No joke. (Photo courtesy of Adler Planetarium)

The path  back to normal begins to look more like the yellow brick road as an insightful Comics exhibition gets set to open at the Museum of Contemporary Art, the Art Institute of Chicago is happily welcoming more and more visitors to its Monet exhibit and the Adler Planetarium reminds folks they can explore the museum and space online by putting space  projections on theMart. Plus, over in Pennsylvania the Philadelphia Museum of Art gets ready to show off the major renovation of its 1928 building by architect Frank Gehry.

Bisa Butler. 'The Princess,' 2018. The Art Institute of Chicago, Collection of Bob and Jane Clark. Copyright Bisa Butler. (Photography courtesy of Art on theMART)
Bisa Butler. ‘The Princess,’ 2018. The Art Institute of Chicago, Collection of Bob and Jane Clark. Copyright Bisa Butler. (Photography courtesy of Art on theMART)

Art on theMart

April . No fooling. Projections on theMart at the Chicago River and Merchandise Mart Plaza promise to fascinate drivers and walkers as they move from the Adler Planetarium’s Astrographics about how we viewed the Earth, Other Worlds, the Stars and the Beyond April 1 through July 4.

In addition, the Art Institute’s Monet and Bisa Butler’s works simultanesously go from April 1 to May 19 followed by CPS class of 2021 projects May 20 to June 26.

The timing works because the Adler’s projections are about 16 minutes so the remaining time is filled by the other partners. Projections start at 8:30 p.m. CT and continue for about 30 minutes. Then, they begin again at 9 p.m. For more information visit Art on theMart and Spring art on theMart 2021.

EXPO Chicago

Also in April but online is a curated digital exposition of contemporary and modern art put together by EXPO Chicago, the organization that has annually held its highly regarded show at Navy Pier pre-COVID. It runs APRIL 8-12, 2021 and includes gallery works plus knowledgeable art sessions. For information and registration visit EXPO Chicago.

 

Upon entering the museum via the Robbi and Bruce Toll Terrace, visitors will be able to see up into the Great Stair Hall and down into the Williams Forum, revealing pathways to art on multiple levels. Architectural rendering by Gehry Partners, LLP and KX-L, 2016. (Photo courtesy Philadelphia Museum of Art, 2021.)
Upon entering the museum via the Robbi and Bruce Toll Terrace, visitors will be able to see up into the Great Stair Hall and down into the Williams Forum, revealing pathways to art on multiple levels. Architectural rendering by Gehry Partners, LLP and KX-L, 2016. (Photo courtesy Philadelphia Museum of Art, 2021.)

 Philadelphia Museum of Art

May, With travel returning as more people get their second vaccine, visiting museums outside the Midwest sounds enticing and doable. Among the places to visit is the Philadelphia Museum of Art to see how architect Frank Gehry (designer of Chicago’s Pritzker Pavilion renovated the museum’s 1928 building. The unveiling is May 7, 2021. For more information visit Philamuseum/renovation.

 

Lynda Barry, 100 Demons: Dancing, 2000-02. (Photo Courtesy Adam Baumgold Fine Art)
Lynda Barry, 100 Demons: Dancing, 2000-02. (Photo Courtesy Adam Baumgold Fine Art)

Museum of Contemporary Art

June brings “Chicago Comics: 1960s to Now” at the MCA. “From radical newspapers to literary graphic novels, encompassing autobiography, satire, absurdism, science fiction, horror, and fiction, the exhibition foregrounds comics and cartooning as a democratic medium that allows artists to grapple with the issues of their time,” says an MCA statement about “Chicago Comics”

Running June 19 through Oct. 3, 2021, the exhibit reveals Chicago as a center for comics and cartooning. For more information visit MCA Chicago Comics.

Turtel Onli, Nog comic book page, 1980. © 1981 Turtel Onli (Courtesy of the artist)
Turtel Onli, Nog comic book page, 1980. © 1981 Turtel Onli (Courtesy of the artist)

 

Jodie Jacobs

Around Town: See Federal Art Project and Outsider art works

"The Dead Tree" Image courtesy of the Illinois State Museum)
“The Dead Tree” Image courtesy of the Illinois State Museum)

With Chicago museums allowed to open with Covid protocols in place, there are new exhibits to see at places off the beaten path.

Among them are the Ukrainian Institute of Modern Art and the intuit Center for Intuitive Outsider Art..

“Work People Art,” pieces done under the Works Progress Administration’s Great Depression era Federal Art Project, open at the Ukrainian Institute Feb. 20 and continue through May 16, 2021.

“Nearly 90 years later, these works speak to contemporary American struggles with a Covid-19 pandemic, its accompanying political and economic repercussions, and an era of social upheaval,” says an exhibit statement.

The exhibition is a road show organized by Doug Stapleton, associate curator of art at the Illinois State Museum.

The Ukrainian Institute of Modern Art is at 2320 W. Chicago Ave. For more information visit UIMA and  WorkPeopleArtOpening.

 

Widener - Harvest (Photo courtesy of Intuit)
Widener – Harvest (Photo courtesy of Intuit)

The following weekend, Intuit opens Feb. 26 with a George Widener exhibition that continues through May 9, 2021.

Called “In Focus: George Widener,” it features works from the Victor F. Keen collection.

“George Widener is an exceptional living artist who blurs the boundary between outsider and contemporary art with his works that focus on numbers, dates, cities and codes,” says Intuit President/CEO Debra Kerr.

Intuit is at 756 N. Milwaukee Ave.  For more information visit art.org.

Jodie Jacobs

 

Get Gogh-ing to Chicago’s Immersive Van Gogh experience

 

Immersive Van Gogh in Chicago (Michael Brosilow photo)
Immersive Van Gogh in Chicago (Michael Brosilow photo)

4 stars

 

It’s sure to feel like spring is reawakening with glorious sunflowers when you visit the Immersive Van Gogh Exhibit, now showing through September 6.

This visually spectacular digital art exhibition invites audiences to “step inside” the iconic works of post-Impressionist artist Vincent van Gogh. It evokes his highly emotional and chaotic inner consciousness through art, light, music and movement.

With more than 50 projectors illuminating over 14,000 square-feet, visitors are   surrounded by Van Gogh’s brushstrokes and colors, including animated details from Self Portrait with Felt Hat (1888), The Bedroom in Arles (1889), Irises (1889) and The Starry Night 1889).

Immersive Van Gogh is a glorious experience that will envelop the visual and audio senses. Classical music, Edith Piaf’s “No Regrets” and other French songs stimulate the mind.

Stand in one of the circles on the main floor, then step up to the balcony to get a higher perspective.

Immersive Van Gogh in Chicago (Michael Brosilow photo)
Immersive Van Gogh in Chicago (Michael Brosilow photo)

The 1-hour Van Gogh exhibit has been designed in accordance with the latest health and safety protocols. Capacity is limited and masks are required at all times. Digitally projected social distancing circles on the gallery floors ensure appropriate spacing.

Ticket prices start at $39.99 for adults ($24.99 for children 16 or younger) with untimed and flexible ticket options available.

Immersive Van Gogh is at the Lighthouse Art Space, 108 Germania Place, Chicago. For more information, visit vangoghchicago.com or call 844-307-4644.

Mira Temkin

 

More Chicago area museums open

See an in-person exhibit on Nelson Mandela, Women in the Military, Monet or Marvel Comics.

As the number of COVID cases go down Chicago’s museums have begun inviting visitors back, enticing them with special exhibits.

Safety protocols will be followed including timed tickets and, of course, wearing masks. As an old, once popular ad said, “Don’t leave home without it.”

The Shedd Aquarium and Field Museum opened in January. The Art Institute of Chicago, Illinois Holocaust Museum and Lake County Dunn Museum are opening in February and the Museum of Science and Industry opens in March.

 

Illinois Holocaust Museum in skokie (Photo courtesy of the IL Holocaust Museum)
Illinois Holocaust Museum in Skokie (Photo courtesy of the IL Holocaust Museum)

Illinois Holocaust Museum & Education Center

The museum welcomed the public back with free admission on Feb. 3, 2021 and will continue to offer free admission on Wednesday through March. Hours are 9 a.m. -5 p.m., Wednesday through Sunday but tickets must be purchased online ahead of time. See safety procedures.

Current main special exhibition is “Notorious RBG: The Life and Times of Ruth Bader Ginsburg” up until about Feb. 20, 2021.

Upcoming special exhibit is “Mandela’s Struggle for Freedom” opening Feb. 20.

For tickets and other information visit ILholocaustmuseum.

The Illinois Holocaust Museum is at 9603 Woods Dr., Skokie, (847) 967-4800.

 

Art Institute of Chicago (J Jacobs photo)
Art Institute of Chicago (J Jacobs photo)

Art Institute of Chicago

The museum’s blockbuster “Monet and Chicago” seen only as a virtual exhibit after the pandemic closed its doors, is now possible to view in person through June 14, 2021.

The museum reopened Feb. 11 with limited days: Thursday-Monday (closed Tuesday and Wednesday. Member are invited to come from 10 to 11 a.m. and the public from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m.

For tickets and protocols see Visit a Chicago Landmark | The Art Institute of Chicago (artic.edu).

The Art Institute of Chicago is at 111 S. Michigan Ave. and 159 E. Monroe (Modern Wing).

 

Lake County Dunn Museum (photo by John Weinstein)
Lake County Dunn Museum (photo by John Weinstein)

Bess Bower Dunn Museum

The museum, a Lake County Forest Preserves property, reopens Feb. 13 with online, timed tickets.

“Modifications have been made throughout the galleries and gift shop to minimize touch points and support social distancing,” said Director of Education Nan Buckardt.

Along with displays of Lake County history and artifacts, the museum is currently celebrating Black History Month. Its special exhibit, “Breaking Barriers: Women in the Military,” will be up through June 13, 2021.

Modified hours are 10 am to 3:30 pm, on Tuesdays, Thursdays and Saturdays, with visitation time slots available from 10–11:30 am, 12–1:30 pm, and 2–3:30 pm. The galleries and gift shop will be closed between these time slots for cleaning and disinfecting.

The museum will be open on Presidents Day, Monday, Feb.15 and  then will resume its regular schedule.

“We look forward to welcoming visitors back again to the Dunn Museum,” said Angelo Kyle, president of the Lake County Forest Preserves. “Our priority remains to create a safe environment and provide peace of mind for all our visitors and staff while connecting them with Lake County history and culture.”

For tickets, safety protocols and other information visit Bess Bower Dunn Museum. The museum is  at 1899 W. Winchester Rd., Libertyville, (847) 367 6640.

 

MSI opens with Marvel Universe exhibit (photo courtesy of Marvel and the Museum of Science and Industry)
MSI opens with Marvel Universe exhibit (photo courtesy of Marvel and the Museum of Science and Industry)

Museum Of Science and Industry

MSI as Chicagoans call the museum, will reopen  with the premiere of “Marvel: Universe of Super Heroes,” when it welcomes members on March 4 and the public on March 7.

A major exhibit, the ” Marvel Universe” will contain more than 300 items ranging from sculptures, interactive displays and costumes to props from Marvel films and original comic book pages.

After opening weekend, MSI will be open Wed -Sun  from 9:30 a.m. to 4.p.m. For tickets, protocols, hours and other information visit MSI status.

The Museum of Science and Industry is at 5700 S. Lake Shore Drive.

Jodie Jacobs

Related Chicago museums opening now and next two months – Chicago Theater and Arts

 

 

 

Chicago museums opening now and next two months

Some Chicago museums are opening to members beginning Jan. 23 and then to the public in the coming days. The museums’ reopening comes on the heels of IL Gov. J. B. Pritzker’s announcement this week that the city has moved to tier 2  mitigation.

(Pritzker is expected to announce today, Jan. 23, that the city has also reached tier 1 thus restaurants and bars will be be allowed to re-start indoor seating at 25 percent capacity.)

The Shedd Aquarium and Field Museum on the city’s Lake Shore Drive Museum Campus are among the current open museums. The Art Institute of Chicago plans to reopen in February.

Shedd penguins (J Jacobs photo)
Shedd penguins (J Jacobs photo)

Shedd Aquarium

Visitors can start purchasing tickets to the Shedd Aquarium at noon, Jan. 23, 2021. The Shedd, 1200 S. Lake Shore Drive, is home to the penguins seen by thousands of viewers across the world on UTube.

Members can visit on the early access days of Jan. 27-29. To join the Shedd  visit  become a Shedd Aquarium member and visit free for a year and support its aquatic life.

The public can visit beginning Jan. 30. To obtain tickets visit Shedd aquarium/purchase. visit To get tickets.

Field Hall dinosaur (J Jacobs photo)
Field Hall dinosaur (J Jacobs photo)

Field Museum

The Field Museum, 1400 S. Lake Shore Drive, opened to members Jan. 21 and is opening to the public today, Jan. 23. To buy tickets visit Calendar/FieldMuseum/ticketing. Members should sign in at Verify your membership.

Illinois residents can visit for free on January 25 and 28. Tickets for Free Days are only available onsite and cannot be reserved in advance.

For hours, safety protocols  and exhibits visit Know Before You Go.

Chagall Windows at the Art Institute of Chicago (J Jacobs phto)
Chagall Windows at the Art Institute of Chicago (J Jacobs phto)

Art Institute of Chicago

A world-renown art museum, the Art Institute of Chicago at 111 N. Michigan Ave., will reopen Feb. 11. It will start with a limited schedule Thursday through Monday, from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. and open to members only the first hour.

More museums have indicated they will open in March. For more museum information and future openings visit Choose Chicago/museum reopening, the city’s tourism site.

Jodie Jacobs

 

Chicago museums close

Shedd Aquarium photo
Shedd Aquarium photo

Following Gov. Pritzker’s Covid-19 case mitigation orders on Nov. 17, 2020, Chicago’s museums will close this week. Several of them will shutter late afternoon Wednesday, Nov. 18.

Shedd Aquarium

The Shedd plans to close at 5 p.m. Wednesday and hopes to reopen Saturday, Jan. 2, 2021. Its website has some fee-based videos, animal encounters and education programs to offset the loss of revenue it needs for animal care and conservation. For more information visit sheddaquarium.

 

Claude Monet, Stacks of Wheat, (Art Institute of Chicago photo)
Claude Monet, Stacks of Wheat, (Art Institute of Chicago photo)

 

Art Institute of Chicago

The museum closed Nov. 17. However, some of the exhibits and interesting information about them can be found online. Check Beyond the Surface for painting background on Monet at YoutTube/Watch and other information at articedu closure.

 

Museum of Science and Industry

MSI will close Nov. 18 at 4 p.m. The museum has digital programs and resources. Visit MSIChicago for more information. See some of the tree decorations that are part of the museum’s annual Christmas Around the world exhibit at Trees and Traditions. To see how the exhibit was build and what it looks like now visit Christmasaroundtheworld.

 

Adler Planetarium on the eastern edge of Chicago's Museum campus. (Photo by J Jacobs)
Adler Planetarium on the eastern edge of Chicago’s Museum campus. (Photo by J Jacobs)

Adler Planetarium

The museum closed back in March 2020 and has remained closed but it has  an online presence for star gazers and folks who want to stay current on sky events.  Visit astronomy live but also check the events that occur every week and every other week such as Skywatch Weekly. Click on the arrow to see what is available free such as NASA LIVE for the latest operations at the International Space Station.

 

 

 

Remarkable exhibition and art space come to Chicago

 

Immersive Van Gogh (Photo courtesy of Immersive Van Gogh)
Immersive Van Gogh (Photo courtesy of Immersive Van Gogh)

 

Imagine being surrounded by the art of Vincent van Gogh translated into movement, color and sound.

If you deliberately drive or walk past theMart to see what pictures are currently shown on the huge Wacker Drive side of the building as Art on theMart or it you tried getting tickets for last year’s sold-out last year and this year’s almost sold out Lightscape, the Chicago Botanic Garden’s stroll through immersive light and sound, you are likely to want to get to tickets when they go on sale this month to “Immersive Van Gogh.”

Tickets go on sale 11 a.m. CST Nov. 23, 2020 at VanGoghChicago and (844) 307-4644. Prices start at $39.99, adults and $24.99 for youth age 16 and younger. Tickets and space conform to pandemic protocols of social distancing and hand sanitizing.

The exhibition deconstructs Dutch artist Vincent van Gogh and several of his works including “The Starry Night” and some of the “Sunflowers” series during an hour-long, 360 degree experience among changing projections and music in a 500,000 cubic foot space.

 

Immersive Van Gogh Exhibition (Photo courtesy of Immersive Van Gogh)
Immersive Van Gogh Exhibition (Photo courtesy of Immersive Van Gogh)

 

The creative team responsible for the Parisian Atelier des Lumières Exhibition in Paris is getting the Chicago edition of “Immersive Van Gogh” ready to open Feb. 11, 2021, according to Chicago Commissioner of Culture Mark Kelly during an introductory conference Nov. 16.

However, as remarkable as the Immersive van Gogh exhibition will be, Kelly also considered the space as equally important. The exhibition which leaves early May is going up in the formerly dormant, now remodeled, historic Germania Club in Old Town. The building will be known as Lighthouse ArtSpace Chicago, a new venue for immersive art.

After noting that the Paris exhibition drew more than 2 million visitors, Kelly pointed out that Lighthouse ArtSpace Chicago would, from a global view, become a new “art destination.”  He added that Chicago, already known for its art institutions, would be an “art powerhouse.”

Jodie Jacobs

Classes to take now: think art or cooking or even science

 

 

If tired of friends asking what are you doing with more time at home, put yourself into one of those cartoon frames with a lightbulb in the overhead cloud.

What would the next frame show? Learn how to make a holiday dessert or favorite ethnic dish? Learn to draw? Paint a portrait of your pet? Work with clay?  And what if the frame has another figure such as a young son or daughter/ So what about a fun science or comic-book or kids cooking class.?

Chicago Theater and Arts CTAA) checked out several resources in the Chicago area to come up with three suggestions for now. (More later in January to combat winter and Covid doldrums).

 

 

An Art Center of Highland class is on painting your pet. (TAC photo) Park the
An Art Center of Highland class is on painting your pet. (TAC photo)

The Art Center

TAC, as highland Park’s art exhibition and class space is called, has in person and online classes. A good website to know, TAC has online mini classes for adults and youngsters such as one for ages 15-100 to learn how to do a pet’s portrait, work with colored pencils or portray a winter scene.

Classes are online between Nov. 30 and Dec. 20, 2020 with most starting Dec. 1 and going on for two weeks using zoom. Youth classes, for drawing, cartooning, painting and clay,  are typically are  for age 9-13 but some begin at age 8.

Visit TheArtCenterhighlandpark for for information.

 

 

Chef Gale Gand (photo courtesy of Gale Gand)
Chef Gale Gand (photo courtesy of Gale Gand)

Kitchen Sisters Cooking School

Get dinner ideas. Cook and learn from famed chefs. Have the kids take a class.  Those are just some of the perks of going to Chefs Gale Gand and Jessica Dawson’s online Kitchen Sisters Cooking School.

Gand, an award winning pastry chef, cookbook author, Michelin star and James Beard restaurateur and cooking teacher works out of the Chicago area. Dawson is a traveling chef, teacher who was the youngest traveling America’s Test Kitchen host and has taught people around the world the science of cooking (when she stops long enough to teach in one place).

 

 

Forensics Chromatography (MSI Photo)
Forensics Chromatography (MSI Photo)

Museum of Science and Industry Resources Lab

MSI has a new, online spot for tomorrow’s scientists. Some of the topics are Mission to Mars: what to pack, Forensics Chromatography, and Engineers: building bridges. For more information visit MSIChicagoResources.

Jodie Jacobs

 

Better than a blood pressure pill to forget Covid and political strife

 

Even the pundits don’t know when the full election results will be known or get through the courts. So, folks who welcomed the spirit of Halloween for personal and family feel-good time, now need another good-ole’ standby, holiday shopping, to raise spirits.

Christkindlmarket and the One of a Kind Show Chicago will both go virtual in this pandemic year of 2020.

Christkindlemarket in Daley Plaza (J Jacobs photo)
Christkindlemarket in Daley Plaza (J Jacobs photo)

Christkindlemarket

A European-style holiday event sponsored by the German Chamber of Commerce of the Midwest, Christkindlemarket moved online from downtown Chicago, Wrigleyville and Milwaukee on Nov. 1.

Shoppers can visit the fun market for its signature mug, mulled wine, holiday ornaments and activities through Dec. 31, 2020.

For more information visit Christkindlemarket.

 

One of a Kind Show Chicago (J Jacobs photo)
One of a Kind Show Chicago (J Jacobs photo)

One of a Kind Show Chicago

A popular event that features art and food items upstairs at theMart (that huge building formerly known as Merchandise Mart on the Chicago River), the One of a Kind Show opens online Nov. 12.

Shoppers can browse and buy jewelry, wearable art, paintings, photos, yummy treats and a slew of other gift items through Dec. 6, 2020.

To view participating artists visit Artists.

.For more event information visit OneofaKindShow.

 

Around Town: Three fun activities

 

Tiffany dome at Chicago Cultural Center (J Jacobs photo)
Tiffany dome at Chicago Cultural Center (J Jacobs photo)

Now that November is here, normally, (and what is normal anymore?) calendars are full of fall and early winter events.  In the Chicago area that means many holiday activities and shows are usually available in person. Some of them are still taking place with timed tickets such as the Botanic Garden’s Lightscape and the Museum of Science and Industry’s Holiday Trees. More on those events next time. But other events will be presented differently this year. Here are a few suggestions.

 

Cloud Gate in Millennium Park (J Jacobs photo)
Cloud Gate in Millennium Park (J Jacobs photo)

Chicago Cultural Center and Millennium Park

Take a free tour of the Chicago Cultural Center or the art in Millennium Park.

The tours are offered virtually on demand by volunteers through the Department of Cultural Affairs and Special Events. Among stops at the 1897 Cultural Center is the Tiffany dome.

The Millennium Park tour includes work by Anish Kapoor and Kerry James Marshal. For more information and to sign up visit DCASEvolutuntours.

 

Art on theMART starts new projects. (Photo courtesy of theMART)
Art on theMART starts new projects. (Photo courtesy of theMART)

Drive or walk by theMART,

Art on theMart starts again Nov. 12. Among the scenes will be the Joffrey ballet’s images from “the Nutcracker,” and pictures from the Art Institujte of chicago’s M\”Monet and Chicago, “Bisa Butler’s Portraits and “
Arts of Life.

The images will on nightly at 7 and 7:30 through Dec. 30o. For more information visit artonthemart.com.

 

It's a wonderful Life Live (American Blues Theater photo
It’s a wonderful Life Live (American Blues Theater photo

“It’s a Wonderful Life: Live in Chicago

The American Blues Theater is bringing back its annual production. The classic show runs 80 minutes andcan be viewed virtually. However, it is live so there are specific times, dates and tickets.

“At American Blues, we miss so much of the experience of live theater, including its energy, social nature and ephemeral quality.,” said Artistic Director Gwendolyn Whiteside

“This season, we will bring “It’s a Wonderful Life: Live in Chicago” entirely live for every scheduled performance. We will also be interactive, bringing our popular audiograms to audience members during every performance.,” said. Whiteside. She added,” This year has been filled with so much uncertainty, but the one thing audiences can count on is the holiday tradition of “It’s a Wonderful Life.”

Based on Frank Capra’s film, it can be seen online Nov. 12 2020 through Jan. 2, 2021. For tickets and more information visit American Blues Theater.

Jodie Jacobs