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August (Virtual) Art Picks

Image: “Chicago Spring,” curated by Lauren Iacoponi featuring various artists. Six small windows have works of several artists hanging. In the top left window, Sarah Genematas, colored pencil drawing and David Stonehouse, mixed media drawing. Bottom left window exhibits MyLinh Mac, canvas painting, Ata Berkol, hand marbled fabric, Marcy Thomas-Burns and Amy Shelton collaboration, sculpture by Thomas-Burns, and print by Shelton, The top middle window exhibits a fine art photo print on cotton paper by Darryll Schiff. Bottom middle window exhibits an exhibition poster by Gordon Hall, a polyhedron wooden sculpture by John Heinze, and a plastic primary colored house by Shistine Peterson. The top right window has work by Tabor Shiles, which is a screenprint on silk, and a screenprint on paper by Trashformal (Charlotte Gasparetti Ribar and Spiros Loukopoulos). The bottom right window exhibits botany illustrations by S. Curtis Glazenwood Essex and Millicent Kennedy’s colored pencil and ink drawing. Photo by Amy Shelton.

If you’ve followed us for a while, you know that our Art Picks offer a wide scope of events that are relevant to our audiences because we and the artists, cultural workers, curators, spaces, and projects we support live full lives that know no boundaries. We maintain expansive practices and work toward justice for BIPOC, LGBTQIA+, and disability communities in Chicago and the Midwest.  

If this is your first time coming across this list, welcome. We’re glad you’re here and we hope this list sparks discovery, curiosity, and a demand for justice if you weren’t openly demanding that already.

Created in collaboration with The Visualist and adapted for social-distancing due to COVID-19, this list offers online exhibitions, streaming events, a list of online collections from Black and LGBTQIA+ archives, and other ways to spend time in the virtual space. 

Also, in support of our friends, our communities, ourselves, and abolition/liberation efforts, we’re prioritizing events that uplift and fight for Black Lives and celebrate Black Queer Lives because the fight for Black Lives is the fight for Black artists, our Black Trans family, our Black Queer family, and the many branches of these communities. 

With the health of the communities and artists we love in mind, the only in-person events listed are ones associated with protests happening across Chicago.

The featured image shows Chicago Spring, curated by Lauren Iacoponi featuring various artists, on display as part of the ongoing quarantine initiative Purple Window Gallery. The photo is by Amy Shelton and was originally published here.

This is a growing list, so check back often for new additions.

Chicago Protest Listings

Chicago Protest Calendar
Protest Chicago

Note: If you’re attending any protests or events, here are some tips from The Blackivists archivist collective on how to document thoughtfully with the care and safety of our coummunites in mind.

Ongoing
Cooperation for Liberation Study & Working Group
#LetUsBreathe Collective, The Kola Nut Collective, & Cooperation for Liberation Study & Working Group
Free

Ongoing
Quarantine Times
Public Media Institute
Free

Ongoing
The Quarantine Concerts
Experimental Sound Studio
Suggested donation of $5

Ongoing
HELLO NEIGHBOR PURPLE WINDOW
Free

Sat, August 1, 5-7:30pm (also on August 15)
Banner Build Wkshps For The Movement
PO Box Collective: 6900 N Glenwood Ave
Free

Sun, August 2, 11am
Neighborhood Memorial for Victims of Police Violence
PO Box Collective: 6900 N Glenwood Ave
Free

August 3-31, 2020
Fantastic Strangers
Circle Contemporary: Online
Free

Tues, August 4, 12-12:30pm
Virtual Studio Visit: Joe Freshgoods
Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago: Online
Free

Tues, August 4, 4-5:30pm
The Artistry of Black Organizing in the 21st Century
Haymarket Books: Online
Free

Tues, August 4, 5:30-6:30pm
Tuesdays on the Terrace: At Home Edition with Sharel Cassity
Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago: Online
Free

Tues, August 4, 7pm (also on August 18)
Demilitarized U. Study Group at PO Box
PO Box Collective: 6900 N Glenwood Ave
Free

Tues, August 4, 7-10:30pm
Virtual OUTspoken! LGBTQ Storytelling via Zoom
Sidetrack The Video Bar: Online
Free

Wed, August 5, 2-3:30pm
In Care Of: Higher Vibes with Stacy Letrice
Reva and David Logan Center for the Arts: Online
Free

Wed, August 5, 3-4:30pm
How Have We Changed?
LATITUDE: Online
Free

Wed, August 5, 6-7pm
Voices from the Front Line: Health Care Workers and the Fight Against Covid
Haymarket Books: Online
Free

Wed, August 5, 7-8pm
Rapid Response Series: Resurgence
Envisioning Justice: Online
Free

Wed, August 5, 7-8pm
Virtual Book Launch Party: THE BEAUTY OF YOUR FACE by Sahar Mustafah
Women & Children First Bookstore: Online
Free

Thurs, August 6, 4-5:30pm
Pandemic Lessons 3: Where Can We Go From Here?
Gallery 400: Online
Free

Thurs, August 6, 7-8pm
Body in Vain: A conversation with Carlos Salazar-Lermont and Wil Ruggiero, moderated by Marina Resende Santos
Chuquimarca: Online
Free

Thurs, August 6, 7-8:15pm
The Exquisite Crawl: A Virtual Edition in Three Parts
Elastic Arts, Arts+Public Life, and The Hideout Inn: Online
Free

Thurs, August 6, 7-8pm
Defacing the Monument: A Reading and Conversation
Volumes Bookcafe: Online
Free

August 7-29, 2020 (appointment only)
Process and Material
Woman Made Gallery: 2150 S Canalport Ave, 4A-3e
Free

Fri, August 7, 12pm
2020 Action for Safety and Liberation!
Workers Center for Racial Justice: 2929 S Wabash Ave, Suite 203
Free

Fri, August 7, 6-9pm
Kathryn Eli: One True Line
Side Street Studio Arts, 15 Ziegler Ct, Elgin, IL
Free

Sat, August 8, 1-6pm
Relic, Remedy and Ritual
Heaven Gallery: 1550 N Milwaukee Ave #2
Free

Sat, August 8, 6-8pm
Copitas de Sol: A Virtual Mezcal Mixer
National Museum of Mexican Art: Online
$30-100

Sat, August 8, 4:30-6:30pm
Visual Arts Open Studio
Dorchester Art + Housing Collaborative: 1456 E 70th Street
Free

Sat, August 8, 8-10pm
Life Out Loud 2020
Arcade Park: 11149 S Saint Lawrence Ave
Free

August 10, 2020
ESP USA
Flatland: Online
Free

Mon, August 10, 8-10pm
Option: Gerald Cleaver
Mana Contemporary: Online
Free

Wed, August 12, 2-3pm
Living Practice: Vick Quezada with Catherine Damman
Experimental Sound Studio: Online
Free

Wed, August 12, 6-7:30pm
In Care Of: Stories of Care with Emily Hooper Lansana
Reva and David Logan Center for the Arts: Online
Free

Thurs, August 13, 2-4pm
Working with Nature – Inside Out
Chicago Art Department: Online
$0-$25 – pay what you can

Thurs, August 13, 5-9pm
Wig Heavier Than A Boot: Closing Reception + Gallery Talk
Filter Photo: 1821 W Hubbard St, Ste 207
Free

Thurs, August 13, 7-9pm
Sudden Impact 2020 Summer Series
Hairpin Arts Center: Online
Free

Fri, August 14, 6pm
BLM March & Rally: 75 Women Of Color Murdered Memorial
Richard J. Daley Center: 50 W Washington St
Free

Fri, August 14, 7-8pm
Book Launch: SPAWN by Kristen Renee Miller
Women & Children First Bookstore: Online
Free

Sat, August 15, 12pm
Black Lives Matter March: SHUTDOWN OUR DAN RYAN
Garfield 55th& Dan Ryan
Free

Sat, August 15, 9pm-1am
Dual Record Release: Melkbelly + FACS, CB Radio Gorgeous
Sleeping Village: 3734 W Belmont Ave
$15-17

Sat, August 15, 8:30-11:30pm
Loose Assembly: Ward, Reid, Adasiewicz, Abrams, Reed
Constellation Chicago: 3111 N Western Ave (and online)
$0-15

Mon, August 17, 1-3pm
Option: Magda Mayas
Experimental Sound Studio: Online
Free

Tues, August 18, 6-7pm
Virtual Book Launch: IKENGA by Nnedi Okorafor
Women & Children First Bookstore: Online
Free

Wed, August 19, 2-3pm
DIY Motion with Scott Wolniak
DePaul Art Museum: Online
Free

Wed, August 19, 7-8:30pm
PRISON BY ANY OTHER NAME: The Gendered Face of Prison Reform
Women & Children First Bookstore
Free

Wed, August 19, 3:30-5pm
Black LatiNext: A BreakBeat Poets Vol. 4 Book Release
Haymarket Books
$0-$25

Fri, August 21, 6pm
BLM March: Dfund 12 & SAVE OUR KIDS from Juvenile Detention Ctr
Roosevelt-Western Currency Exchange: 1143 S Western Ave
Free

Fri, August 21, 12-1pm
MoCP Behind the Lens: Natalia Lasalle-Morillo
Museum of Contemporary Photography, Chicago
Free

Sat, August 22, 1-6pm
Field Measure
LVL3:1542 N Milwaukee Ave, 3rd floor,
Free

Sat, August 22, 12-1pm
And And And–Stammering: An Interview
Museum of Contemporary Art
Free

Sat, August 22, 4-9pm
Art&Edibles One>Way Show
The Pilsen Art House
Free

August 22 & 23, 7pm
Freedom From and Freedom To #3
Elastic Arts: Online
$0-10

Sat, August 22, 8:30-11:30pm
Ben LaMar Gay
Constellation Chicago: 3111 N Western Ave (and online)
$0-15

Sun, August 23, 1:30-3pm
RHINO Virtual Poetry Forum: Naoko Fujimoto
Rhino Poetry
Free

Wed, August 26, 2-3pm
Gag Cartooning with Jessica Campbell
DePaul Art Museum: Online
Free

Wed, August 26, 7-9pm
This is America: Truths through My Body
Center on Halsted: Online
Free

Wed, August 29, 6-11pm
A Gold We All Need
Chicago Art Department: 1926 S Halsted St, #100
Free