DePaul University’s new art museum opens with a fresh look at 40 Chicago artists, both celebrated and obscure. Featuring photographs, sculpture and paintings, the exhibit spans 150 years of art made in Chicago.
The DePaul Art Museum’s new $7.8 million home at 935 W. Fullerton Ave., just east of the CTA’s Fullerton “L” stop, debuted with the Sept. 17 opening of “Re: Chicago.”
The exhibition, which runs through March 4, 2012, examines the careers and artistic reputations of Chicago artists over more than a century.
Artworks in the exhibition were chosen by asking leading figures in the Chicago art world – from critics to scholars to collectors – to name a famous artist or one who should be famous.
“We wanted to explore how reputations are made, and also to give attention to how art is seen and talked about,” said Museum Director Louise Lincoln. “People understand art in a lot of different ways. If you’re a collector, you see it differently from how a scholar would see it. It’s all about the interaction between the viewer and the work. This seems obvious, but it is rarely addressed in exhibitions.”
Next to the artwork are short written explanations by the nominators about why they made their choices, and visitors to the exhibition are invited to give their input as well on computers in the galleries, said Lincoln, who also serves as curator of the show.
“The exhibition certainly has some surprises,” Lincoln said. “But the list of who’s included is complex, and I like that. Some choices were really unexpected – like Margaret Ianelli, a wonderful graphic designer from the early 20th century, who was not only a female in a man’s world, but was also mentally ill. I’m thrilled she’s in the show. Another unconventional choice was Nick Cave, whose ‘sound suits’ alter the body in radical ways.”
The new museum opened to the public on Sept. 17.
Various additional events and programs, including faculty-run tours and a film festival, will be held throughout the show’s run. The museum is free and open to the public.
At 15,200 square feet, the new three-story building more than doubles the space the museum previously occupied at DePaul’s Richardson Library and includes space for class use, programs and events.
DePaul has applied for LEED silver certification for the building based on its energy-efficient features, such as its partial green roof; reflective roof coatings; proximity to public transportation; water-efficient landscaping; storm water system design; and energy-efficient heating, cooling and ventilation.
For more information on the opening of the museum, check out the following video.
To see some of the featured artists' work, view the image gallery below.