EXPO Chicago, the international exposition of contemporary and modern art, drew hundreds of attendees for its ninth edition, which took place April 7-10 at Navy Pier's Festival Hall.
Marking the exposition's first in-person return since its 2019 edition, the event featured more than 140 leading galleries representing 25 countries and 65 cities from around the world. Countries represented at the 2022 exposition included Argentina, Azerbaijan, Brazil, Canada, China, Colombia, Finland, France, Germany, Great Britain, Greece, Israel, Italy, Japan, Mexico, Netherlands, Peru, Puerto Rico, Singapore, South Africa, Spain, Thailand, Turkey, United Arab Emirates and the United States.
Some of the local exhibitors in the expo included Chicago Artists Coalition, Casterline | Goodman Gallery, Corbett vs. Dempsey, Jean Albano Gallery, Spudnik Press, Rhona Hoffman Gallery, moniquemeloche, Volume Gallery, CASE Art Fund, 6018North, the Museum of Science and Industry, The School of the Art Institute of Chicago and Generative Multilogue.
If there's anything an attendee could take away from the expo, it's that the concept of art is timelessand fluid. NYC-based installation artist Theda Sandiford displayed shopping carts (including two dedicated to Kanye West's late mother, Dr. Donda West) that served as commentaries on emotional baggage, materialism and other issues. Juame Plensa's 10-foot-tall sculpture, "Hortensia," was carved from Vietnamese marble. Fredrikson Stallard's striking sofa "Species" (which resembles flowing lava) consists of polyurethane, rubber, fiberglass and polyester.
Then, there's Chris Larson's massive installation, "The Residue of Labor," which is open through May 21. At an offsite location (401 N. Paulina St.) in addition to a small presentation of works at ENGAGE Projects (864 N Ashland Ave.), the exhibit spans more than 10,000 square feet and includes 55 recent works that incorporate sculpture, video, drawing, painting and photography, as well as an immersive work titled "Thread Room."
In addition, there were discussions such as "The Education of the Un-Artist, Part I," "What is Art Criticism's Job Today?," "Generative Art and NFTs" "Too Much, Not Enough: Visions of a New Chicago Visual Poetics," and "Conservation and Book-Signing with Devan Shimoyama." The latter featured Shimoyama talking about the exploration of the Black, queer, male body in paintings that combine fur, feathers, glitter, and costume jewels to bring dimensionality to his surfaces.