2008 Annual Meeting and Acquisition Vote

5:30?7:00 p.m. Exhibition preview in Gallery 136 5:30?7:00 p.m. Cocktail reception in the Millennium Park Room 6:30 p.m. Presentation of works in Gallery 136 7:00 p.m. Dinner, annual meeting, by-law amendment and acquisition vote in the Millennium Park Room 8:00 p.m. Tabulation and announcement of results The Acquisition Committee of the Society for Contemporary Art at the Art Institute of Chicago is pleased to announce the acquisition candidates for 2008. This year?s offering includes a foam and glass sculpture by Matthew Monahan (American, born 1972); a series of photographic collages and works on paper by Richard Hawkins (American, born 1961); a 16mm film by AK Dolven (Norwegian, born 1953); a copper sulfate and wood sculpture by Roger Hiorns (English, born 1975); and a suite of color photographs by Boris Mikhailov (Ukranian, born 1938). The Acquisition Selection 2008 exhibition is currently on view in the contemporary art galleries (136?137). On May 22nd, James Rondeau and Lisa Dorin will present the proposed works prior to voting. Please be aware that you must be a member in good standing to vote. Couples may share a single membership vote. We hope you will be able to attend this exciting event?your vote counts! Please call Jenny Gheith at 312.443.3630 to make a reservation. All reservations must be made by Friday 16 May 2008 2008 Acquisition Candidates A K Dolven?s films, videos, and photographs explore notions of female beauty, the romantic sublime, and the effects of time and aging. Threaded with an underlying sense of unease and rich in visual and conceptual references, her staged scenes oscillate between the surreal atmosphere of dreams and prosaic depictions of everyday rituals. Though little may occur on screen, Dolven?s utilization of a minimal mise-en-sc?ne focuses the viewer?s attention on those elements through which the familiar is rendered strange, the evident is made elusive, and normal power structures are subverted. Amazon depicts an androgynous archer, who is visually dissected by short sequences and rapid changes of the camera angle, repeatedly raising and drawing a bow. Shown close-up, the figure?s neck, shoulder, and upper arm muscles snap between tension and rest, as shadows from the bow cast lines across the chest. Halfway through the film, a quick mid-shot of the archer?s bare torso exposes a missing breast. By referencing the mythic race of female warriors who were said to cut off their right breasts to facilitate drawing their bows and increase the accuracy of their arrows, Amazon conveys the harnessed strength, courage, and physical determination required to overcome breast cancer Best known for his erotically charged collages depicting male celebrities, fashion models, and porn stars, Richard Hawkins?s work mixes autobiographical motives with a critical yet celebratory look at the culture industry. His handmade books, ink-jet prints, figurative and abstract paintings, and sculptures address a wide range of topics, including male desire, pop-star idolization, the struggles of mixed-race Native Americans, the function of hermaphroditic statuary in the Roman era, late-19th-century decadence, and the sex tourism industry of Southeast Asia. Selected by the artist, this group of seven individual works on paper makes public his private?borderline obsessive?yearnings. Reproductions of two of Hawkins?s objects of desire?1980s teen idol Matt Dillon and Dazed and Confused star Wiley Wiggins?join images of a young, shirtless boxer and an androgynous high-fashion model torn from magazines and stained with colorful daubs of oil paint. Created during the artist?s transition into painting, these youthful figures act as muses, physically providing a surface for Hawkins to paint on or use to wipe off excess pigment from his brushes. Roger Hiorns unites man-made objects with natural and chemical elements that act as agents of alchemical change. Fusing the organic with the industrial, the functional with the poetic, Hiorns chooses materials that are inherently transformative and combinations that typically require activation?for example, ceramic vessels cleansed with detergent, steel sprayed with perfume, and rusty BMW engines and thistles submersed in copper sulfate. Exposed to the vagaries of chance and the fluctuations of the environment, Hiorns?s aesthetic experiments complete and reinvent themselves with time. Before the Rain consists of two store-bought cardboard models of Gothic cathedrals?Notre-Dame in Paris and Ulm in southern Germany?bathed in copper sulfate and housed on a freestanding shelf. Cocooned in a turquoise and blue crystalline crust, the fragile surfaces of these famous architectural icons sparkle with a baroquelike decadence reminiscent of religious relics. Their adorned presence contrasts with the disparate materials of the shelter, which will seemingly shield them from the imminent downpour hinted at in the title but cannot protect them from disintegration. Matthew Monahan assembles freestanding, semi-figurative sculptures, presented in glass vitrines or on handcrafted pedestals, from unconventional, disparate materials such as floral foam, beeswax, glitter, pins, Styrofoam, glass, twine, wire, metal leaf, and fragments of his earlier works. Under self-imposed rules, Monahan creates by mining his imagination, without the use of photography, source materials, fabrications, or ready-mades. His fragmented figures often depict characters?warriors, saints, slain heroes, and demons?that express such enigmatic emotions as Zen contemplation and Gothic anguish. Monahan?s complex layering of narratives onto materials invites speculation as to each object?s history and meaning. In Alchemy of Pain, a hulking, statuesque figure stands on a low platform constructed of raw gypsum drywall. Separated into three distinct parts and reassembled with wood trowels and metal nails that pierce and adorn its body and face, the limbless form supports a narrow sheet of glass?topped with a three-dimensional charcoal drawing?precariously balanced on its sorrowful visage. Alchemy of Pain references the exaggerated poses of classical sculpture while revealing the allegorical transformation of everyday materials into a symbol of awkward harmony. Since the late 1960s, Boris Mikhailov?s photographs have provided an alternative Soviet and post-Soviet history, visually exposing the realities of his homeland and satirically criticizing the airbrushed deceptions of Communist-approved Social Realism. Although not trained as a photographer, Mikhailov has created over 30 conceptually complex and stylistically diverse photographic series that are unified by his political dissidence. These seven color photographs, from the series Case History, chronicle the lives of the bomzhes?the homeless?a new social class that emerged in the wake of the dissolution of the Soviet Union in the artist?s hometown of Kharkov, Ukraine. Participating in the new capitalist system, Mikhailov paid his subjects to reenact religious schemas and everyday rituals that often reveal ravaged bodies marked with scars, rashes, tumors, bulging bellies, and sagging breasts. In this selection, the viewer is confronted with disturbing portraits of children and adults whose raw features are heightened by the artist?s use of harsh lighting and saturated colors that overexpose the fragility of their existence. **For a list of bibliographic sources on the artists, please contact the administrator.

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