Designer Toys, Art & Pop Culture

February Exhibits: Cindy Scaife and BaM!

Artwork by Cindy Scaife

Sweet Home Chicago Logo

Sweet Home Chicago
New Works by Cindy Scaife
February 3-26, 2017

BYOB Opening Reception Friday, February 3, 7-10pm

Cindy Scaife was born and raised in Toronto, Canada and she graduated from the Ontario College of Art and Design (OCAD). For over 25 years Cindy has worked as a full-time professional artist, muralist and art educator. 

Cindy is greatly influenced by the art, design and advertising illustrations of the Atomic Age. Drawing heavily from the colour palette and optimism of this era, Cindyʼs work reflects its own nostalgia and innocence. Cindy arrived at her style of art by way of the 1950ʼs advertising industryʼs development and use of the product mascot, an anthropomorphic character used to promote a companyʼs wares to a wide audience.

Her artwork has been exhibited in galleries in the Ontario, British Columbia and Los Angeles.

Sweet Home Chicago is a tribute to Chicago’s rich candy history. With this show Cindy continues her exploration of food and advertising mascots by creating anthropomorphic imagery that examines the origins, cultural influences, history and significance of a variety of food products.

While conducting extensive research into the food items that are specific and significant to the Chicago area, Cindy discovered the city’s unique and noteworthy connection to the confectionery industry. For over a century Chicago has been the candy manufacturing hub of the United States. With this exhibit, Cindy will be highlighting a selection of the candies that have become some of the most beloved and enduring sweets in the United States, all of which have Chicago roots.

Join us and Cindy for the opening reception on the evening of Friday, February 3, 7-10pm where we'll have snacks and beverages (BYOB if you want beer or wine), not to mention awesome music courtesy of DJ Sean Doe.

Works will be available to purchase at the gallery beginning at 11am on Friday, February 3 or via email starting at 2pm the same day for members of our Gallery Previews List (sign up here).


 Artwork by BaM!

The 33

The 33 — A Cabinet of Curious Characters
New Works by BaM! (Bruce Bachelder and Mike Rende)
February 3-26, 2017

BYOB Opening Reception Friday, February 3, 7-10pm

“Check your ego at the door.” is the driving thought when Chicago-area artists Bruce Bachelder and Mike Rende (collectively known as BaM!) set out to create their collaborative art. The artists, both graduates of Northern Illinois University, each start a painting and then hand it to the other to complete. Sometimes they follow the original vision for the painting, but it’s always more interesting when they don’t.

The 33 – A Cabinet of Curious Characters is their newest series of paintings, inspired by a box of old "cabinet cards" that Bruce's mother found while cleaning out her basement. After pulling out all of the relatives she could identify, she planned to discard the remaining photos that were of people she did not know, but Bruce rescued them from that untimely fate and inspiration struck when he presented them to Mike.

Why not bring their ‘artistic misunderstanding’ to a more tangible format? Why not leverage a basic, clear, starting point and build on that? So they embarked on a challenge to create 33 new portraits, each based on a cabinet card from the basement find.

Join us, along with Bruce and Mike, for the opening reception on the evening of Friday, February 3, 7-10pm where we'll have snacks and beverages (BYOB if you want beer or wine), not to mention awesome music courtesy of DJ Sean Doe.

Works will be available to purchase at the gallery beginning at 11am on Friday, February 3 or via email starting at 2pm the same day for members of our Gallery Previews List (sign up here).


Posted Jan 19, 2017 by Kirby Kerr 0

January Exhibits: Daria Tessler and Shawnimals Plus Ninjatown Eeensy Charms Launch

Unsolved Landscapes Title Logo

Unsolved Landscapes
New Works by Daria Tessler
January 6-29, 2017

BYOB Opening Reception January 6, 7-10pm

Born in Finland, Daria Tessler grew up in California where she studied printmaking and mathematics. Now living in Portland, Oregon, Daria is the creator of Animalsleep, a collection of silkscreened art, illustrations, children's books and comics.

For Unsolved Landscapes Daria has created a beautiful collection of graphite drawings on paper exhibiting her wonderfully surreal and playful style, plus we'll have some of her framed screenprints available.

Join us for the opening reception on the evening of Friday, January 6, 7-10pm where we'll have snacks and beverages (BYOB if you want beer or wine), not to mention awesome music courtesy of DJ Sean Doe.

Works will be available to purchase at the gallery beginning at 11am on Friday, January 6 or via email starting at 2pm the same day for members of our Gallery Previews List (sign up here).


a town…OF NINJAS!

a town…OF NINJAS!
A Decade-long Retrospective of Ninjatown by Shawnimals
January 6-29, 2017

BYOB Opening Reception & Ninjatown Eeensy Charms Launch Party
January 6, 7-10pm

This January Shawnimals and Ninjatown creator Shawn Smith will be filling our side gallery with a retrospective of his Ninjatown world...expect paintings, prints, rare Ninja of the Month plush and even some original Wee Ninjas from the Shawnimals Archive to be made available PLUS we'll be debuting Ninjatown Eeensy Charms, produced by Squibbles Ink + Rotofugi!

Join us for the opening reception on the evening of Friday, January 6, 7-10pm where we'll have snacks and beverages (BYOB if you want beer or wine), not to mention awesome music courtesy of DJ Sean Doe. Shawn Smith will be in attendance to chat with fans too!

Works will be available to purchase at the gallery beginning at 11am on Friday, January 6 or via email starting at 2pm the same day for members of our Gallery Previews List (sign up here).


Posted Dec 30, 2016 by Kirby Kerr 0

Lana Crooks & Andrew Bell plus Melissa Sue Stanley in December

A new month means new art in our main and side galleries! We're super excited to have a wonderful exhibit by two great artists, Lana Crooks and Andrew Bell, in our main gallery for December, plus Melissa Sue Stanley will be showing her wonderful stitched creations in the side gallery! 

Night Fall
New Works by Lana Crooks & Andrew Bell
December 9-31
, 2016
BYOB Opening Reception December 9, 7-10pm

Chicago-based artist Lana Crooks loves the antique, the creepy, the cute and the mysterious. Constructing creatures from fabrics and found objects, she is a purveyor of faux specimens and soft curiosities that are a blend of science and fantasy. Sought after for her pattern-making abilities, she frequently teams up with other artists to breathe three dimensional life into their illustrations, earning her two Designer Toy Awards. She enjoys drawing from real specimens in dusty back rooms of Chicago's natural history museums but, on an average day, you can find her in the studio surrounded by skulls, old books, aging fabrics, and a cat named Tanuki!

New York-based Andrew Bell enjoys working in a variety of mediums, from illustrations and paintings to toys and sculptures. His expressive characters embody a complex set of emotions, lending them a real sense of life and hinting at a deeper narrative. The work is tied together by a sense of humor that often belies a more serious and somber message.

Andrew draws inspiration from his travels, his dreams, and the diversity of life surrounding him in his home of Brooklyn, New York. Over the last 15 years he has published several books based on his “Creatures in my Head” series of illustrations and has released hundreds of prints, toys and products through his company Dead Zebra Inc.

His work has been featured in gallery shows and publications around the world including The New York Times, Wired, Newsweek and Fast Company. You may even have seen his famous Café Grumpy logo on HBO’s ‘girls’, or his Google Android toy on widely syndicated The Big Bang Theory. He has received three “Designer Toy Award” honors, including the 2015 Toy of the Year award!

Join us for the opening reception on the evening of Friday, December 9, 7-10pm and you'll have a chance to chat with both Lana and Andrew, plus we'll have snacks and beverages (BYOB if you want beer or wine), not to mention awesome music courtesy of DJ Sean Doe.

Works will be available to purchase at the gallery beginning at 11am on Friday, December 9 or via email starting at 2pm the same day for members of our Gallery Previews List (sign up here).

Dandelion Wine
New Works by Melissa Sue Stanley
December 9-31, 2016
BYOB Opening Reception December 9, 7-10pm

Melissa Sue Stanley creates paintings and soft sculptures in Chicago, IL.  Her work is collected internationally and has been exhibited in galleries across the US.  

Melissa draws her inspiration from life and experience in the Midwest. Memories of cicadas, storms, and endless fields are captured in drawings and paintings - with a twist of magical realism and using all the tools in her studio. Following this theme, Melissa also creates small creatures out of wool and wire. These monsters and spirits are stitched together from summer evenings. Both bright and dark, they offer colorful delights as well as dark mysteries.  

Melissa grew up in the small towns of northern Illinois with lightning bugs, creek-beds, and dandelions. She studied drawing and painting, and continues to do so, in various weekly figure drawing sessions at local art leagues and studios.  

Melissa also works with her partner, Max Bare, on comic books and small products.  Together they manage and host the Chicago Drink & Draw Social Club, and are members of the OhNo!Doom Collective.  

Join us for the opening reception on the evening of Friday, December 9, 7-10pm and you'll have a chance to chat with Melissa, plus we'll have snacks and beverages (BYOB if you want beer or wine), not to mention awesome music courtesy of DJ Sean Doe.

Works will be available to purchase at the gallery beginning at 11am on Friday, November 11 or via email starting at 2pm the same day for members of our Gallery Previews List (sign up here).

 


Posted Nov 28, 2016 by Kirby Kerr 0

Ken Keirns and FlipBooKit Exhibit/Workshop

The Cubs won the World Series (sorry, we can't help ourselves) and we're ramping up for some great new exhibits and a cool workshop on November 11 and 12!

Short Stories
New Paintings by Ken Keirns
November 11-December 4, 2016
BYOB Opening Reception November 11, 7-10pm

In the main gallery we welcome back one of our favorite artists, Ken Keirns. Ken has been working hard on a new series of paintings under the title Short Stories. We can't wait to share this new body of work with you in what will be Ken's eighth solo exhibit in our gallery! Shown above is Slow Jam (detail)....that's a short story we'd love to read!

Join us for the opening reception on the evening of Friday, November 11, 7-10pm and you'll have a chance to chat with Ken who will be in attendance, plus we'll have snacks and beverages (BYOB if you want beer or wine), not to mention awesome music courtesy of DJ Sean Doe.

Works will be available to purchase at the gallery beginning at 11am on Friday, November 11 or via email starting at 2pm the same day for members of our Gallery Previews List (sign up here).

FlipBooKit Show: Chicago
November 11-December 4, 2016
BYOB Opening Reception November 11, 7-10pm

Not content with one awesome exhibit in November, we've also got new works going up in our side gallery...something a little different...the Chicago edition of the FlipBooKit Show

What's a FlipBooKit, you ask? FlipBooKit is a DIY hand-cranked movie-loop machine that displays your own video or animated art. It’s a great maker project and it makes for a great gift, easy for any creative aged 8+!

For the exhibit, FlipBooKit inventors Mark Arnon Rosen and Wendy Marvel have curated a selection of artist-designed FlipBooks, all of which will be on display with special motorized FlipBooks! This one will be a fun, lively exhibit that you don't want to miss, plus we'll have DIY FlipBooKits available and will also be hosting a workshop (details below) with Mark and Wendy if you want to jump in and make your own!

Featured Artists: Brandon Sines, Cassia Lupo, Chema SKandal!, Cindy Suen, Clem Stamation, Csaba Klement, Elaine Chen, Eric Fleischaeur, Heather Cardone, Jaime Giraldo, Jeremy Tinder, Julia Liu, Ken Keirns, Kim Lu, Laura Berger, Michael Hsiung, Nate Bear, Patrick Burnell, Rachel Koukal, Ramiro Davaro-Comas, Shawn Cheng, Tony Rabit, Travis Lampe and Victor Kerlow.

Join us for the opening reception on the evening of Friday, November 11, 7-10pm and you'll have a chance to chat with Mark and Wendy who will be in attendance, plus we'll have snacks and beverages (BYOB if you want beer or wine), not to mention awesome music courtesy of DJ Sean Doe.

Works will be available to purchase at the gallery beginning at 11am on Friday, November 11 or via email starting at 2pm the same day for members of our Gallery Previews List (sign up here).

Inspired to make your own FlipBook? Join us the next day after the opening for a special workshop with the inventors of FlipBooKit!

FlipBooKit Workshop, Saturday, November 12, 2-4pm
Wendy and Mark will take you through the process of building your FlipBook Box from the provided FlipBooKit Craft kit, and then help you create your own hand-cranked FlipBook animation from a video! 

For more information about the workshop and to sign up please click here.


Posted Nov 03, 2016 by Kirby Kerr 0

Late October/Early November Special Events

Just in time for Halloween, we’re bringing you a one day pop-up shop filled with the gnarliest, spookiest art we could find!

We’re psyched to be hosting this special pop-up shop and exhibit featuring the works of Ghostfreehood, aka Baltimore-based artist Nick DiFabbio of cherrymothcake.com! Join us 11am-7pm, on Saturday, October 29 to grab some awesome art, pins, prints and more!

One day only, mark your calendars now!

 

Mitch O’Connell, “The Prince of Pop Art,” is back with a second volume of the most acclaimed collections of sexy, salacious and stunning tattoo flash ever published! Jam-packed with an ALL NEW selection of Perky Pin-Ups, Adorable Angels, Dastardly Devils, Wicked Wolves, Sinister Skulls and much more!

Join us the evening of Wednesday, November 2, 6-9pm for a signing with Mitch, along with graphic designer Joseph Allen Black, and get a copy of his new book for just $14.95…PLUS we’ve arranged for Chicago’s Revolution Tattoo to be at the gallery during the signing, tattooing a selection of works from Mitch’s new book for just $100 each! Limited tattoo time slots will be available, arrive early to guarantee a spot!

Mitch O’Connell Tattoos, Volume 2 is published by Last Gasp Publishing.


Posted Oct 18, 2016 by Kirby Kerr 0
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