Wild Dream: Re-imagining the Ballet Russes
Renovar Spring 2014
"We are witnesses of the greatest moment of summing up in history, in the name of a new and unknown culture, which will be created by us, and which will also sweep us away"
The Ballet Russes was the impresario Serge Diaghilev's wildest dream. He created an art enterprise that manufactured excitement and celebrated modernism. His theatrical spectacles combined traditional narrative with emerging art, enabling him to promote his taste and making him reputable to his collaborators. He was neither a composer or artist, yet he managed to assert an unprecedented influence on art in the early 20th century.
Serge Diaghilev started his career as an art exhibitor, curating a show of 4000 works in St. Petersburg. He later was part of a collective that created the art journal Mir Iskusstva (World of Art) and held art lectures and discussions. Later he applied his curatorial eye to the ballet, in association with the migration of artists and nobility that fled Russia from the Bolshevik revolution, Diaghilev exported Russian culture and artists to Paris. In 1909 his Ballet Russes was a instant sensation, beginning his legendary collaborations with artists, composers, choreographers and fashion designers. Among his collaborators were Pablo Picasso, Georges Braque, Henri Matisse, Joan Miro, Leon Bakst, Sonia Delaunay, Jean Cocteau, Coco Chanel, Vaslav Nijinsky and Russian composer Igor Stravinsky. The Ballet Russes unification of all mediums made it much more than the ballet, with Picasso's cubism applied to set design and Chanel's simplicity to costume, it gained international fame. With glory also came controversy. Stravinsky's "The Rite of Spring", inspired by Pagan rituals to spring, met with outrage for it's primitive dance and jolting score that ignited the infamous riot in 1912.
Over a hundred years later the cultural phenomenon of the Ballet Russes continues to intrigue with exhibitions popping up all over the world. Recent exhibitions included, When Art danced with Music at the National Museum in Washington D.C 2013, Elegance in Exile:Between Fashion and Costume, the Diaghilev Era at the Palazzo Moceniza Museum in Venice 2011, Diaghilev and the Golden Age of the Ballet Russes 1909-1929 at the Victoria and Albert Museum in London 2010, and Ballet Russes Art of Costume at The National Gallery in Australia 2010, all showcasing the elaborate costumes and visuals from the rich history of The Ballet Russes.
Wild Dream, Renovar's Spring 2014 collection gives in to the daydream of becoming a modern ballerina, inspired by the explosive and kinetic costumes of The Ballet Russes. While maintaining a contemporary context, Renovar pairs sumptuous blasts of color with whimsical styles to recreate spectacle. The costumes are both thrilling and shocking with bold geometry and dripping pearl
work by Jessica Bardsley, Gwynne Johnson, and Ashley Thomas
Oct 18th- 27th
“… a shadow is a simultaneous memory…”
“From the outset, perception belongs to recollection.”
Night Without Sleep presents a world drawn in shadows, revealing the contours of our guiding drives, passionate attachments, and forgotten remains. Gwynne Johnson’s photographs and objects reveal the unconscious of domestic life through the rhythms of celestial and corporal bodies. Ashley Thomas’s noir-palette drawings and collages depict the objects of her fixation larger than life or swimming in darkness, while Jessica Bardsley’s constellation of archival film and photographs activates historical residue to trace the ocean’s haunted past. The artists of Night Without Sleep remake common objects and archival materials according to their memories, perceptions, and desires, illuminating the periphery of the visible, or quietly revealing what goes unseen by day.
Heaven Presents "Being a Woman in an all Women Show"
18 women art exhibition
Marissa lee Benedict
Jessica Taylor Caponigro
I have been accused of secretly wanting to be a man. This comment was made recently during a studio visit with a fellow artist, who saw how uncomfortable and wary I became as she steered our discussion towards gender politics.
I do not harbor the desire to undergo a sex change, but I also do not want to be seen solely as a female artist. It is from this position of defensive resistance in which I find myself "being a woman in an all women show."
There are many ways to experience discrimination in the art world; gender inequality is just one of them. To be defined by one's gender as a female artist is to be limited. A colleague recently brought to my attention the fact that the most reputable galleries here in Chicago all represent far more male artists than female. This inequality is made even worse when one realizes that our city's art schools are enrolling more women than men. An admissions counselor at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago informed me that women compose roughly 70% of its student body. A woman can be trained (and pay for that training) as an artist, but it is not the same as her becoming one. "Being a woman in an all women show" is an effort to make up for this blatant discrepancy.
Not all artists consciously implicate their gender while making their work, and yet gender remains a determinant factor in how artworks are curated and disseminated. It seems unfortunate that an all-female exhibition is unusual enough to serve as a curatorial platform.
With this exhibition, Heaven gallery is pleased to exhibit the work of eighteen artists, who all happen to be women. These are good artists, not good-for-being-female artists. With this exhibition, let us hope that the exceptional work of each artist is seen as expected, and not a surprise.
Sonic Healing Ministries Presents its annual Chicago jazz fest after-set, HEREAFTERFEST 2 nights of noncommercial music for the soul rooted in the Chicago free jazz tradition Heaven Gallery 1550 N. Milwaukee Ave. 2nd Floor Suggested Donation $10 Friday Sep 4th - 10pm-12midnight DJ Ayana Contreras - spinning sould and rare groove Participatory Music Collective - Adam Zanolini on saxphone, flute, etc; Angel Elmore on clarinet and piano, and others t.b.a. Microcosmic Sound Orchestra - David Boykin on drums set and reeds, Eliel Sherman Storey on saxophone, Dan Godston on trumpet, Alex Wing on guitar Saturday Sep 5th 10pm 12midnight DJ Ayana Contreras - spinning soul and rare groove David Boykin Expanse - David Boykin on saxophone and vocals, Jim Baker on piano, Ashford Smith on bass and others t.b.a. (playing two sets)
Heaven Gallery is pleased to present Ask the Oracle, a group exhibition by artists Claire Arctander, Ann Gaziano, Annie Kielman, and AP Shrewsbury. Often acting as a medium through whom truth is delivered and trusting their intuition, the artists in Ask the Oracle construct paintings, sculptures, and performances, that address belief in non-conforming spirituality and result in work that is a process of creation through small yet endless epiphanies. Using contemporary pop culture to discuss feminist identity and notions of wanting and revulsion, Claire Arctander will present work that addresses the gendered dynamics of magic. Though women were often the primary healers and magic practitioners in early American history, with the rise of institutionalized patriarchal medicine came the attempted ostracization and eradication of the same women, now labeled as witches. Artander’s sculptures and performance challenge the stereotypical male magician, popularized at the turn of the twentieth century as a fast talking man in a top hat perpetuating a “nothing up my sleeve” trope. Also utilizing cultural constructs, Ann Gaziano’s work addresses how the past is transformed by contemporary society. Focusing on the relationship between the body, furniture, and interior design, Gaziano instinctually assembles material and objects that revolve around familiar patterns and underlying systems, creating an experience that places the viewer in a mode of contemplation. Both the sculptural work, which is loosely based on a recognizable polka dot grid made of used baking pans, and the printed fabric contain distinct and identifiable references to domestic space and create connections to the familiar. Annie Kielman uses manipulation as a basic language, creating artificial representations that manifest through process. By relinquishing control and trusting in the foundational elements of her medium, Kielman allows for perceptual readjustments through distortion. Held together by magnets, her three dimensional prints rely both literally and conceptually on tension and pressure to connect with their frames, inherently possessing the potential for movement. Like a stenographer from an unknown land, AP Shrewsbury creates paintings and sculptures that reference traditional inscriptions, yet are unrecognizable. Familiar yet strange, Shrewbury’s work is heavily influenced by his transformative experiences with plant medicines under the direction of a Peruvian shaman. Using impulse and seemingly innate knowledge, Shrewsbury’s work searches for wisdom through experience, perhaps suggesting that only once inner joy, peace, and contentment is found, can one translate the text he has transcribed.
Please join us during the opening reception for a Magic Act, performed by Claire Arctander at 8:30 pm.
Claire Arctander earned a BA in Art Theory and Practice and Gender Studies from Northwestern University and an MFA in Studio Art from the University of Illinois at Chicago. She has taught art classes for UIC and the City Colleges of Chicago. In the past she has been a summer resident at The Cooper Union, Summer Forum, and ACRE. She heads to Ox-Bow this September for a Fall Artist Residency. Upcoming Shows (other than this one at Heaven) include herTrunk Show opening on July 25 and a one-person show at The Nightingale in the fall. Ann Gaziano was born in Chicago, Illinois and grew up in Santa Fe, New Mexico. In 2005, she graduated from the College of Santa Fe with a Bachelors of Fine Arts degree in Sculpture and went on to receive her Masters of Fine Arts degree in Sculpture from Cranbrook Academy of Art, Bloomfield Hills, Michigan in 2010. Her work was most recently presented in Beyond the Selvage: A History of Screen-printing at The Fabric Workshop and Museum in Philadelphia, PA and a solo exhibition at Generator in Albuquerque NM. She has been part of numerous group exhibitions including Into the Woods at the Museum of Contemporary Art Detroit, representation by Launch Projects at Art Santa Fe, 2009 and Hair of The Dog at The Center for Contemporary Art in Santa Fe, New Mexico. She has also received residencies at the Vermont Studio Center, I-Park, and ACRE. She now lives and works in Chicago. Annie Kielman is a Chicago based artist who’s multi-media work focuses on reconstructed impressions through manipulations of process, material, and language. Annie received her MFA in Printmedia from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago in 2013. She currently teaches at Harold Washington College, Co-runs the Design and Fabrication Collaborative VimFete, and is finalizing the building of a Print shop and shared artist space in Pilsen (name TBD upon unlikely agreement of all members). Annie has exhibited widely in Chicago and throughout the US. AP Shrewsbury was born in Mississippi in 1984. Shrewsbury primarily creates works in the mediums of painting and sculpture. Themes center on the act of perception itself, the transcendent human experience and quasi-multidimensional letterforms. A self taught artist, he has recently had work included in group shows at Castor Gallery in Manhattan, FireCat Projects in Chicago and Minotaur Projects in LA. His work is in private collections worldwide. He Lives and works in the Ann Arbor, MI area.
Saturday, June 20, 2015 - 6:00pm to Sunday, June 21, 2015 - 12:00am
Come make Stardust Memories at Heaven Gallery’s 15th Annual Benefit and Art Auction. Support a Chicago institution by bidding on art from some of it’s brightest stars. Help us celebrate 15 years of Heaven by dancing into the night in your most stellar attire. The event begins 6pm with a VIP reception and silent auction serving hors d'oeuvres and cocktails then transitioning into a dance party at 9pm. Tickets are available for both entry times during gallery hours or :http://stardustmemories.eventbrite.com/ The silent auction features works by: Soo Shin, Mika Horibuchi, Dan Rizzo-Orr, Liz McCarthy, Aron Gent, Jessica Taylor Caponigro, Marissa Lee Benedict, Phil Peters, Sarah and Joseph Belknap, Jessica Harvey, Leo Kaplan, Meg Noe, Eileen Mueller, Sterling Lawrence, Erin Jane Nelson, Ron Ewert, Brad Temkin, Dan Devening, Christopher Meerdo, Ben Gill, Sarah Mosk, Zachary Hobbs, Stella Brown, Gwendolyn Zabicki, Boyang Hou, Annie Kielman, and more. VIP Reception 6–9PM Includes hors d'oeuvres by Rachel Ettling and Gabe Holcombe of the ACRE Kitchen and a signature cocktail created by Nandini Khuand Dance Party 9–12AM Music by Ben Marcus, DJ Cordell Johnson and Jesse Andwich Plus celebrity guest DJ DouggPound Cash bar and craft beer provided by Revolution Brewing Company ___ Heaven Gallery Hours Fri 2-6 pm Sat&Sun 1-6 pm
Opening 7 PM Friday, May 8 2015 thru
“A house of dust / on open ground / using all available light / inhabited by friends and enemies” (excerpted from a digital simulation of Alison Knowles and James Tenney, “A House of Dust” (1967/68) by Zach Whalen)
One of the earliest examples of computer generated poetry, “A House of Dust” was a collaboration by Fluxist artist Alison Knowles and composer James Tenney. Creating endless combinations of propositional architectures, landscapes, locations and situations, the randomly assembled four line quatrains of Knowles and Tenney’s poem grounds Benedict & Peter’s investigations into speculative histories, uncanny objects and strange systems of growth.
Overlaying the architecture of Heaven onto itself in such a ways as to re-align the gallery space with Chicago’s grid, Benedict & Peters expose a ghostly architectural space: a framework for repeated objects, actions and videos to occur upon, within and around.
Currently based in Chicago, IL, Marissa Lee Benedict (b. 1985) is a native of Southern California. She received an MFA in Sculpture from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago in 2011. Currently based in Chicago, IL, Phil Peters (b. 1981) is a native of New York state. He received an MFA in Sculpture from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago in 2013.