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Luminous Ground: Artists With Histories

A BREATH-TAKING EXHIBIT EXPLORES THE RESILENCE OF AGE AND CREATIVITY AT THE ILLINOIS STATE MUSEUM, CHICAGO GALLERY

Morris Barazani "If I Could Dance" 2008, Photo: Doug Carr/ISM

Luminous Ground: Artists With Histories will open at the Illinois State Museum Chicago Gallery April 4 and will run through August 26, 2011. The exhibition highlights the work and careers of eleven elder Chicago artists who are, or were, creatively active into their later decades. Many are nationally and internationally known; some have been quieter presences in the art world. All are resilient and vitally creative. The exhibition suggests that, if there is a Fountain of Youth, it is creativity. By spotlighting the exceptional work by these under-represented, mature artists, the exhibit counters the emphasis on  the youth culture that pervades the art world.  The Gallery is located on the second floor of the James R.Thompson Center at 100 W. Randolph, suite 2-100.

Thomas Kapsalis "Street Scene" 2008, Photo: Tom Van Eynde

The artists include Ralph Arnold (1924-2006), constructions; Morris Barazani (1925), abstract paintings; Gerda Meyer Bernstein (1931), socially relevant installations; Fred Berger (1923-2006), figurative painting and sculpture; William Frederick (1922), silversmith; Theodore Halkin (1924), painting and sculpture; Thomas Kapsalis (1925), abstract painting and sculpture; Vera Klement (1929), painting; Ellen Lanyon (1926), printmaking and painting; Elizabeth Ruprecht (1932), painting; Leopold Segedin (1927), figurative painting.

The artists of Luminous Ground: Artists With Histories share three important similarities: 1) the creation of life-long  bodies of work of the highest caliber; 2) the influencing of multiple artists across generations, not only by their art, but through teaching and community involvement; 3) commitments of fifty to sixty years or more to the exploration of personal creativity.

Ellen Lanyon "Alchemistic Transposition" 2006, Photo: Michael Tropea

A reception will take place on Friday, April 8th from 4:30 P.M. to 6:30 P.M., there will be a public reception in the Gallery on the second floor of the James R. Thompson Center. Many of the artists will be present.

SPECIAL EVENTS:

There will be two curator-led talks for Gallery members and guests: May 19th and June 16th from noon to 1 P.M. in the Gallery.

Gallery hours are Monday through Friday, 9AM to 5 PM, closed state holidays. The Gallery is free and wheelchair-accessible. Tours are welcome. Please call for appointments.