posted by Caroline Picard

This came out in last week’s NewCity. It’s a great article talking about the DIY practice here in Chicago, what it’s been up to these last weeks and all of that. In any case, it’s worth checking out, I think–

Go here to read the whole thing….

Dec 01

At Zeroes End: Art in Chicago, 2000–2009

By Jason Foumberg

Jin Lee, "Ice 2," 2008. Courtesy devening projects + editions, ChicagoJin Lee, “Ice 2,” 2008. Courtesy devening projects + editions, Chicago

Art is long, but institutional memory is short. In many ways, Chicago’s art history is written as it occurs, in situ, by the people who produce it. Artists toil in their studios, heads-down. Apartment galleries open and close as briskly as the seasons change. We consume one-night-only events by the half-dozen, like so many bottles of free Grolsch beer. Even as new art blogs proliferate, with more scenes being represented than ever before, the snapshot commentary and weekly content often feels dated by week’s end. And yet, paintings aren’t bubblegum summer jams; they’re codified slabs of culture, philosophy and style. We seek dialogue, inspiration and long-term change. In short, we seek longevity, with lasting importance for our work and our peers’—but who has time to write contemporary history while we’re in the midst of making it?

That said, Chicago loves its art history. Outsiders, Imagists, Modernists and firebrands—memorize their precepts and you’re halfway to an MFA degree (however, please don’t leave Chicago once you earn the other half). Our traditions always feel in danger of becoming tinder for the next great fire, so we hand-cobble our history and share the stories orally like a rite of passage. This is to our strength and our detriment. History is our bind. We don’t trash Paschke or cold-shoulder Mies because we’ve worked so hard to carry their legacies. In many global art centers, successive generations of artists break with the past like rebellious teenagers, but Chicagoans do not. Here, innovation comes from influence and education. Doing otherwise, it would feel as if the whole thing could unravel.

As we approach the end of the century’s first decade, it’s time to take census of our situation. Sure, it’s an arbitrary range of numbered years, but such evocative images transpire when we speak of eras, like the twenties or the sixties, and although it’s undecided how we’ll finally refer to this special decade (the naughts? the zeroes? the twenty-first century’s toilet-training years?), the task of reflection is at hand. Somehow we survived the Y2K catastrophe (perhaps belatedly realized on 9/11), and thankfully computer art didn’t take hold in the ways that it threatened (my avatar didn’t sell a single pixilated painting in his Second Life apartment gallery) so where are we now? Ten years older, who are we? Are we struggling with a new -ism? Does a collective yearning animate our desires?

Another Gazette Review!

September 17, 2009

posted by Caroline Picard

We got an awesome review/interview by Jonathan Kaplan in NewCity’s lit section. You can read the article in its entirety here and what follows is the very short beginning….

Westward Through the Ice: Green Lantern Press looks back 200 years

By Jonathan Kaplan


When resurrecting a piece of writing predating the Civil War, precautions must be taken to maintain the genuine message of its words. So when Green Lantern Press decided to reissue a publication about a sea voyage during the winter of 1819-1820, they took it to a whole new level.

“The North Georgia Gazette and Winter Chronicle” came into Green Lantern’s hands as a weathered yellowing pile of newspaper pages still holding the dust and mold from almost 200 years ago. From there, the transformation became a polished and readable bound edition of a piece of history. The editors of the Gazette had to figure out their goal as far as how they were going to bring back this moment in time. Did they want to replicate the original experience or make it something completely fresh? By the time it was finished, the revised edition was aesthetically modern while keeping the heart of a work created generations ago.

posted by Caroline Picard

thanksgiving_receptionThis was published in Newcity this week. Go here to see what else was covered.

RECOMMENDED Three plastic liters of off-brand pop sit on a table next to two stacks of plastic cups and a bowl of ice. That black-and-white photo welcomes us to Jenny Walters’ party, where we get to see images of bound flowerless stalks and rolled fabric bundled tourniquet fashion around an upright vacuum cleaner, and color portraits of women of various ages, all of whom exude an air of distance, self-enclosure and alienation. As old-school feminism makes a comeback this season, Walters offers a particularly excruciating variation on the theme, introducing us to all the lonely people, whether they stand before us dolefully with an arm in a sling or hold tightly a “reborn” doll (“lifelike” simulation of a baby) with mildly distressed tenderness. Walters is not issuing a call to action; she is making a plea that we understand and feel what it means to be trapped in life, as we all are, regardless of gender. Open the pop and take a swig; it is Walters’ brand of aqua vita. (Michael Weinstein)

Through June 13 at Green Lantern Gallery, 1511 N. Milwaukee.

posted by caroline picard

hey check it out! Newcity’s Danny Orendorff wrote a great article discussing the Jinks piece that’s up at the moment. For any of you who haven’t seen it and want to (it’s well worth it) we’re having an artist talk screening on the 28th of February at 2pm. Otherwise you can always email: to make a reservation.

Portrait of the Artist: Mathew Paul Jinks

The year 1950 saw India signing into effect a new constitution, officially marking the nation as a republic free from British rule. One year later, Ealing Studios, England’s oldest film-production company, released the film “The Man in the White Suit,” a satire starring Alec Guinness as a befuddled, good-natured scientist whose invention of a glowing white fabric that cannot deteriorate or stain is meant as an altruistic gesture towards the common man. Yet, the material threatens to undo the entire textile industry and is instead met with hostility and alarm, particularly by labor unions.

India’s independence and the release of the film, two events (one historic and the other quite banal) at first seem mutually exclusive. Yet, for English artist Mathew Paul Jinks, who generations later now works and lives in Chicago, there is something of a post-colonial parable betwixt the two—particularly considering that India is today one of the greatest exporters of textiles, an industry employing millions and millions of people, and fraught with tricky, trans-national power relations.

…to read the rest of the article, see some images and video go here.

posted by Caroline Picard

So you all know that I love The Parlor. It’s probably one of my favorite Green Lantern events, though I’m not really sure what that means since I get pretty excited about most everything that we do. Safe to say, it’s the tidiest, lowest maintenance, most regular and intimate of our events. Terri Griffith and Joanna MacKenzie (from BadatSports) and I, invite various authors to come and read to a live audience. The reading is recorded and then we post an edited version of the event on line. Most recently you can download Anne Elizabeth Moore’s reading here.

At any rate, Newcity just put out their Best of Chicago issue, and The Parlor was named “Best New Podcast” (woohoo!).

Here’s what they said:
“Can’t make it to the latest book reading at Powell’s? Missed last week’s slam at the Red Lion? Now you don’t need to trek to every literary location in the city to hear contemporary writeing talent: the Parlor brings readings to your home computer. Listen to the latest from the likes of Julia Brocherts, Naeem Murr and Anne Elizabeth Moore. Each half-hour episode is recorded at Wicker Park’s Green Lantern Gallery on the first Tuesday of ever month, and is available for download at and iTunes.”