4th Midwest Open

Opening: Friday, Jan 22, 2021 6 – 7:30 pm
Friday, Jan 22 – Feb 13, 2021

1332 S. Halsted St.
Chicago, IL 60607
New address as of Nov. 2023

View the virtual exhibition here


Woman Made Gallery (WMG) is pleased to present its “4th Midwest Open,” juried by Brenda Oelbaum who included the work in a variety of media by 44 women-identified artists from the 12Midwest states.

In her statement, Brenda Oelbaum comments: “It was a great honor to be invited to jury the 4th Midwest Open for Woman Made Gallery. America is not the angry white mob the world witnessed on January 6, 2021. Nothing makes that clearer than one look at the artists and art submitted to this exhibition. We are a rich tapestry of immigrants. We are colorful, unique and speak in a powerful feminist voice. It was this diversity that impressed me the most as I went back and forth through hundreds of entries. Although the locus of the show was the Midwest region, I think there were elements that touched every continent on the planet. This was evidenced in the cultural backgrounds of the artists, the mix of styles and mediums used, from traditional craft to new media and social practice art.It was from this wide array of styles that I was able to select works that illustrate the richness that is the heart and core of this country.” – Brenda Oelbaum

Exhibiting Artists: Gina Alicea, Jaime Andersen, Aodan, Helena Baka, Ginny Baughman, Emily Schnellbacher Bean, Rosalinda Cabrera, Claudia Carlson, Cathie Crawford, Patricia DaRif, Alexis Doerr, Helen Geglio, Nina Ghanbarzadeh, Christine Giancola, Lynn Hill, Doina Iacob, Laurel Izard, Natalie Jackson, Lindsay Johnson, Rebecka Kann, Jennifer Kaplan, Jennifer Kling, Laila Kujala, Meg Lagodzki, Betty Jane Lau, Britni Mara, Jane M. Mason, Monika Meler, Teri Miller, Leah Mitchell, Niki Nolin, Joan Painter Jones, Louise Pappageorge, Mabi Ponce de Leon, Nirmal Raja, Liese Ricketts, Anna Segner, Gabriela Sincich, Jamie Tubbs, Gwynneth VanLaven, Mel Watkin, Sandra Wilcoxon, Qianwen Yu, Chunbo Zhang.

Juror: Brenda Oelbaum is a feminist, multimedia, conceptual artist, working in whatever medium best translates the intended message.  Increasingly her work has become political and ecologically minded, repurposing objects found, donated or bought on the resale market objects in her artwork.  From diet books, to piggy banks and now unwanted seascape paintings, Oelbaum finds inspiration in hunting for the weird and unloved.  Buying antiques and collectibles and repurposing them is an ecologically sound practice.

Classically trained in painting and drawing at the Ontario College of Art and Design University in Toronto Canada, her work has been shown in South Korea, Iceland, and Mainland China, and throughout the contiguous United States.  Her Venus of Willendorf Project which focus’ on the multibillion-dollar diet industry has been studied and written about internationally from Belgium to India many countries in Latin America. Brenda holds a MA in Gallery Administration from the Fashion Institute of Technology in NYC and was the founding President of the Michigan Chapter of the Women’s Caucus for Art and is the Michigan Representative for the Feminist Art Project. From 2014 to 2016 she held the post of President of the National Women’s Caucus for Art.  When she is not working on her own work in her studio in Dexter, MI she is helping to promote women in the arts through her affiliation with the WCA through her vast knowledge of the art and gallery industry, attained by living and working in Soho as a ‘Gallerina’ and Archivist for the estate of May Wilson 1905-1986, and curating exhibitions for the WCA Membership regionally and nationally. Helping others is a great way to build a like-minded community no matter where you are.  You don’t need to be on either coast to be a successful exhibiting artist.  https://www.brendaoart.com/