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This Shadow is a Bit of Ideology

Tuesday, December 09, 2008–Saturday, January 24, 2009

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Artists: Karl Erickson, Andrew Falkowski, Matt Hanner, Shana Lutker, Dave McKenzie, Debora Warner, and Jordan Wolfson

This Shadow is a Bit of Ideology, an exhibition curated by Kelly Chen and Anthony Elms, gathers a group of artists working against the darkness cast by a long, drawn-out war, a rancorous spirit in politics, a social landscape obscured by rampant information retrieval, and a crumbling economy. The artists in the exhibition do not turn their backs on current socio-political issues, but neither do they embrace propaganda. Rather, they harness anxieties—political, economic, personal—as productive generators for form. Introspection, reflective criticism, oblique commentary and cohabitation of past with present are just a few of the tactics by which these artists navigate progressively through the twilight.

The exhibition features the work of several artists from New York and California as well as artists from the Midwest. Karl Erickson is a New York-based artist whose performances, drawings, videos and posters invoke psychedelia and transcendental experiences. His works have been shown recently at The Suburban, Oak Park, IL, and Jack Hanley Gallery and Kristi Engle Gallery, both in Los Angeles, CA. Andrew Falkowski ’s photo-realist paintings have been exhibited in solo exhibitions at Rosamund Felsen Gallery, Santa Monica, CA; Illinois State University, Normal, IL; and High Energy Constructs, Los Angeles, CA. He currently lives in Chicago. Matt Hanner has exhibited his wall paintings, collages, and installations in group exhibitions at the Hyde Park Art Center, Temporary Services, and Deadtech, Chicago. Additionally he has had exhibitions in Dallas, TX, Puerto Rico, and Denmark. He lives in Porter, IN. Shana Lutker works in a variety of media, including sculpture, photography, and installation. Her work aims to reveal the potential of alternative narratives of history. Lutker has recently exhibited at Susanne Vielmetter Los Angeles Projects; Wetterling Gallery, Stockholm; The Suburban, Chicago; and Harris Lieberman Gallery, New York. She lives in Los Angeles.

Dave McKenzie is a Brooklyn-based artist whose performance, video, sculpture, and installation work has been shown in solo exhibitions at the Gallery at REDCAT, Los Angeles; the Institute of Contemporary Art, Boston; and Gallery 400, Chicago. His work has also been included in PERFORMA 07; Studio Museum in Harlem; and P.S.1 Contemporary Art Center, Long Island City, NY. Debora Warner ’s sound, sculpture, painting, and installation work has been shown internationally at Akira Ikeda Gallery, New York, Berlin, and Tokyo; I-20 Gallery, New York; the New Museum of Contemporary Art, New York; Michael Janssen Gallery, Berlin; and Andrew Kreps Gallery, New York. Warner currently lives in New York. Jordan Wolfson is a New York-based artist who primarily makes films and videos. His works have been seen internationally in exhibitions at Gladstone Gallery, Brussels; Yvon Lambert, Paris; the Swiss Institute, New York; Kunsthalle Zurich, Switzerland; and the Moscow Biennial of Contemporary Art, Moscow. He shows locally with Rowley Kennerk Gallery.

EXHIBITION SUPPORT

This Shadow is a Bit of Ideology is supported by the College of Architecture and the Arts, University of Illinois at Chicago, and a grant from the Illinois Arts Council, a state agency.

PRESS RELEASE

Karl Erickson, Andrew Falkowski, Matt Hanner, Shana Lutker, Dave McKenzie, Debora Warner, Jordon Wolfson

This Shadow is a Bit of Ideology

Gallery 400
Chicago, IL
December 9–January 24, 2009

Opening Reception: Wednesday, December 10, 5-8pm

UIC ’s Gallery 400 is pleased to present This Shadow is a Bit of Ideology, a group exhibition curated by Kelly Chen and Anthony Elms. This Shadow is a Bit of Ideology gathers a group of artists working against the darkness cast by a long, drawn-out war, a rancorous spirit in politics, a social landscape obscured by rampant information retrieval, and a crumbling economy. The artists in the exhibition do not turn their back on current socio-political issues, but neither do they embrace propaganda. Rather, they harness anxieties—political, economic, personal—as productive generators for form. Introspection, reflective criticism, oblique commentary, and cohabitation of past with present are just a few of the tactics by which these artists navigate progressively through this twilight.

Featured Artists:

Karl Erickson is a New York-based artist whose performances, drawings, videos, and posters have invoked psychedelia and transcendental experiences. His works have been recently shown at The Suburban, Oak Park, IL; Jack Hanley Gallery and Kristi Engle Gallery, both Los Angeles, CA.

Andrew Falkowski ’s photo-realist paintings have been exhibited in solo exhibitions at Rosamund Felsen Gallery, Santa Monica, CA; and Illinois State University, Normal, IL; and High Energy Constructs, Los Angeles, CA. He currently lives in Chicago.

Matt Hanner has exhibited his wall paintings, collages, and installations in group exhibitions at the Hyde Park Art Center, Temporary Services, and Deadtech, Chicago. Additionally, he has had exhibitions in Dallas, TX, Puerto Rico, and Denmark. He lives in Porter, IN.

Shana Lutker works in a variety of media, including sculpture, photography, and installation. Her work aims to reveal the potential of alternative narratives of history. Lutker has recently been exhibited at Susanne Vielmetter Los Angeles Projects; Wetterling Gallery, Stockholm; The Suburban, Chicago; and Harris Lieberman Gallery, New York. She lives in Los Angeles.

Dave McKenzie is a Brooklyn-based artist whose performance, video, sculpture, and installation work has been shown in solo exhibitions at the Gallery at REDCAT, Los Angeles; the Institute of Contemporary Art, Boston; and Gallery 400, Chicago. His work has also been included in PERFORMA 07; Studio Museum in Harlem; and P.S.1 Contemporary Art Center, Long Island City, NY.

Debora Warner ’s sound, sculpture, painting, and installation work has been shown internationally at Akira Ikeda Gallery, New York, Berlin, and Tokyo; I-20 Gallery, New York; the New Museum of Contemporary Art, New York; Michael Janssen Gallery, Berlin; and Andrew Kreps Gallery, New York. Warner currently lives in New York.

Jordan Wolfson is a New York-based artist who primarily makes films and videos. His works have been seen internationally in exhibitions at Gladstone Gallery, Brussels; Yvon Lambert, Paris; the Swiss Institute, New York; Kunsthalle Zurich, Switzerland; and the Moscow Biennial of Contemporary Art, Moscow. He shows locally with Rowley Kennerk Gallery.

PRINT COLLATERAL

Postcard: This Shadow is a Bit of Ideology – Opening Reception

EXHIBITION CHECKLIST

Karl Erickson

Louis XIV, 2008
Acrylic yarn and canvas mesh

My Two Colonels, 2007
Graphite on paper

Screaming Hawkeye BJ, 2007
Graphite on paper

Andrew Falkowski

Hogan the Barbarian, 2007
Acrylic on canvas

One Fun Nazi, 2007
Acrylic on canvas

Broken Napoleon, 2008
Acrylic on canvas

Waterloo, 2007–08
Acrylic on canvas

Matt Hanner

Turnaround, 2008
Graphite on wall

The Stars are Out, 2002
Neon daily 4pm – 9pm

Shana Lutker

Group Formation Studies (Fronts and Back) I-VIII, 2007
Inkjet prints on newsprint on Plexiglas, wood, shelves

Column (Ionic I), 2008
Etched mirror frame

Column (Tuscan I), 2008
Etched mirror frame

Column (Composite I), 2008
Etched mirror frame

Column (Doric I), 2008
Etched mirror frame

Column (Corinthian I), 2008
Etched mirror frame

Dave McKenzie

Politics is the Art of Compromise, 2008
Ink on paper with table

Present Tense, 2007
DVD, 20:03 min.

Proposal, 2007
Acrylic on canvas

Debora Warner

Monster Appetites Feed in Private, 2008
Embroidery on dyed raw canvas

Good Thoughts Could Save Us, 2008
Embroidery on dyed raw canvas

Paradise Looks a Little Like Nowhere, 2008
Embroidery on dyed raw canvas

Jordan Wolfson

Untitled, 2007
16 mm film transferred to video, 3:00 min.

CURATOR BIOGRAPHIES

Anthony Elms Head ShotAn artist and writer, Anthony Elms is also the editor of the journal WhiteWalls, for which he has curated and/or edited five issues; fourteen books; the CD “Pillow Plays Brotzmann” (with Bottrop-Boy); and the seven-inch single “Filler” (with Academy Records). Formerly with Gallery 400 at University of Illinois at Chicago, he curated and/or organized fourteen exhibitions. His writings have appeared in AfterallArt Asia PacificArt PapersArtforumCakewalkMay RevueModern PaintersNew Art Examiner; and TimeOut Chicago. He has also written essays for many catalogues. As an artist, Elms has been included in projects exhibited at Gahlberg Gallery, Glen Ellyn, Illinois; Hyde Park Art Center, Chicago; Mandrake, Los Angeles; Mess Hall, Chicago; Randolph Street Gallery, Chicago; and VONZWECK, Chicago; among others. He has independently curated many exhibitions, including: Sun Ra, El Saturn & Chicago’s Afro-Futurist Underground, 1954-61 (with John Corbett and Terri Kapsalis); Interstellar Low Ways (with Huey Copeland); Can Bigfoot Get You a Beer? and A Unicorn Basking in the Light of Three Glowing Suns (both with Philip von Zweck).

Kelly Haung Head ShotKelly (Chen) Huang is especially interested in issues of valuation, the global art market, and the relationships between for-profit and non-profit arts organizations. Before moving to Chicago to pursue a graduate degree, Huang worked as a photo editor for The Atlantic magazine in Washington, D.C. There, she participated as a member of the fine arts editorial panel, which led to her overseeing an essay and slideshow on Chinese contemporary art by Britta Erickson. Huang has held positions at Carrie Secrist Gallery, Chicago; Gallery 400, University of Illinois at Chicago; and The Renaissance Society. During her time as Visiting Gallery Manager at Gallery 400, Huang co-curated This Shadow is a Bit of Ideology. As a Curatorial Assistant at The Renaissance Society, Huang assisted on Several Silences and the accompanying catalogue. Huang has recently relocated to the San Fransico Bay Area, where she is currently working on independent curatorial and writing projects. She holds an MA in Arts Administration and Policy from School of the Art Institute of Chicago.

MEDIA COVERAGE

Born, Kathryn. “This Shadow Is a Bit of Ideology.” TimeOut Chicago, Dec. 30, 2008.

Gunn, Dan. “This Shadow Is a Bit of Ideology/Gallery400.” newcity.com, Jan. 12, 2009.