August 1, 2013

Art Expo Chicago

The Second iteration of Art Expo Chicago launches in September 2013 with over 125 galleries.

EXPO CHICAGO, the International Exposition of Contemporary and Modern Art, presented over 125 leading international galleries at Festival Hall at Navy Pier this past September. These exceptional galleries represented 17 different countries and 36 different cities, offering a broad spectrum of modern and contemporary artwork.  


Building on the success of the exposition’s inaugural year, EXPO CHICAGO/2013 ensured Chicago’s place as an annual international fair destination with strong sales and 30,000 visitors.


Led by Macarthur Fellow Jeanne Gang, Studio Gang Architects returned for the redesign of the second annual exposition. Studio Gang’s design for EXPO CHICAGO’s interior environment brought clarity, efficiency, comfort, and energy to the fair. The floor plan, patterned after the city’s gridded streets and lined with exhibition spaces, enabled visitors to view every gallery in sequence without losing their way. This redesign included EXPO VIDEO, an exhibition area and lounge, highlighting the work of multiple video artists. Natural wood display stands and log seating defined the lounge space without obstructing views to the galleries beyond. EXPO CHICAGO’s commitment to design continued with the addition of “Bend,” a series of upholstered foam elements that provided seating under the main center atrium, designed by the renowned firm Snarkitecture, in partnership with Volume Gallery of Chicago along with their unique display fixtures designed for the Museum of Contemporary Art Pop-Up Bookstore at EXPO CHICAGO.

Standout presentations of contemporary art were made by Matthew Marks Gallery, who featured elegant works on paper by Anne Truitt, Ellsworth Kelly, and Terry Winters, and Barbara Mathes Gallery who presented a striking group minimalist works including a trio of Robert Mangold pastels, a Carl Andre floor piece and a black and white painting by Fred Hammersley.  Teaming up to present the most imaginatively curated exhibition at the fair, Eyeline, the always inventive Corbett vs. Dempsey Gallery of Chicago with David Nolan Gallery of New York, combined two booths, hanging drawings, paintings, photographs and sculpture focused exclusively on the portrait.  Works spanning from modernist to contemporary were hung on the same horizontal "eyeline", creating exciting visual conversations between works.

Recognizing the importance of both established and emerging galleries, EXPO CHICAGO also presented EXPOSURE, a special section of the fair reserved for newer galleries. Each gallery highlighted one or two artists from their program. This was a fantastic opportunity for these emerging galleries to gain critical visibility and for visitors to discover new talent. In 2013, all participating galleries were in operation for seven years or less. 

Presented in partnership with The School of
the Art Institute of Chicago (SAIC), /Dialogues 
is a year-round program of symposia, panel discussions, and provocative artistic discourse. The series culminated with informative and thought-provoking daily events during the fair, highlighting the field’s leading artists, architects, curators, designers and arts professionals and the current issues that engage them.

EXPO CHICAGO partnered with the city’s leading visual arts organizations and institutions on and off the show floor. Art and museum partners that offered special viewings were: Arts Club of Chicago, Art Institute of Chicago, ACRE Residency, Bad At Sports, Chicago Architectural Foundation, Chicago Artists’ Coalition, Department of Cultural Affairs and Special Events, Graham Foundation, Hyde Park Art Center, Museum
 of Contemporary Art Chicago, National Museum of Mexican Art, The Renaissance Society at the University of Chicago, the School of the Art Institute of Chicago, and the Smart Museum of Art at the University of Chicago,

EXPO ART WEEK:      September 16 – 22, 2013EXPO CHICAGO:        September 19 – 22, 2013