CGN Virtual Gallery Tour: Northside, Wicker Park / Bucktown / Logan Square
By GINNY VAN ALYEA
As I just wrote in my recent letter about continuing to support galleries and artists virtually while we all hunker down at home for the time being, gallery openings and weekend strolls have long been the place to be to see new art and to connect with other art lovers, but for now, they are not.
I'm attempting to create a digital gallery tour to fill the gap – something I've actually wanted to do for a long time, but I haven't gotten around to it. Now, WFH myself, I am giving it a try. I will always emphasize that in-person is far superior to virtual, but right now, virtual is much better than not at all!
Traditional gallery walks let people stroll through galleries and view current exhibitions while talking to gallery owners about their program and to artists about their work. At its heart, a gallery walk is an interactive means of discovery. While popping in and out of local galleries, you spend time in a neighborhood, visit a district restaurant or bar, and you enjoy the buzz of being part of something as it happens.
In Chicago I've always been proud that I can recommend gallery visits wholeheartedly because dealers are friendly and eager to share knowledge - none of that pretentious nonsense that other cities are known for. But an intimidation factor still remains for some, so again, a win here for the ease and comfort of digital browsing, without the panic that in-person art wandering at a fair or gallery can sometimes induce.
And don't forget if you really like something you see online, chances are you and a dealer or artist can figure out how to physically get it to you despite the current climate. Hey, maybe gallery curbside pick-up will be the next big thing!
For our first Virtual Gallery Tour, we take you to the Northside of Chicago to Wicker Park / Bucktown / Logan Square
Soon we hope to be able to really make this 3–D but for now, please take our bite-sized district recommendation as a starting point for visiting spaces that are relatively close to one another.
1740 W Webster – Bucktown
For 20 years, PAGODA RED has been a design destination for art, history, style, and spirit. They recently moved to a 15,000 sq. ft. rough luxe gallery and studio near the north branch of the Chicago River. They also maintain a top-notch e-commerce site.
2124 N Damen – Bucktown
Firecat projects opened in 2010 and holds monthly exhibitions of both local and national artists without taking a commission from their sales. They have had exhibitions from artists ages 12 to 95 across all mediums with the hope to "put a spotlight on the unusual committed artist who is tired of being the only quirky one in a group show."
The studio features the contemporary cityscape paintings by Errol Jacobson and contemporary still life paintings by Stephanie Weidner.
Errol’s cityscape paintings are known for their atmospheric quality, energetic paint application and abstract/realist interpretation.
Stephanie’s still life paintings range from simple quiet lyrical compositions to paintings that veer towards the surreal.
The studio has an e-commerce site and is open by appt.
3816 W. Armitage - Logan Square
This contemporary gallery in West Logan Square opened within the last two years and features sculpture, painting and photography from emerging and established Chicago artists. It has an emphasis on midcentury abstract works in all mediums.
THE DIME and ADVENTURELAND WORKS ON PAPER
1513 N. Western Ave. – Wicker Park
Both The Dime and AdventureLand are exhibition spaces founded by artist Tony Fitzpatrick, featuring a large number of artists showing work across multiple disciplines. Each seeks to celebrate young and new talent and act as a service to artists in the Chicago area, helping emerging, young, and upcoming artists by providing a location to display their work and a network by which they can connect to the art patrons of Chicago.
• The Dime