Monday, December 22, 2014

CR Event Report: Division of Labor Opening & Co-Occupations Zine Release

This has been a busy season for Cultural ReProducers in Chicago - In November we came out en masse to celebrate the opening of the exhibition Division of Labor: Chicago Artist Parents at Glass Curtain Gallery, curated by and including a whole lot of remarkable Cultural ReProducers alumni (for the full list and curatorial essay, you can download the exhibition catalogue). The show had not one but two openings: an evening reception on November 19th, and an experimental family-friendly Saturday-morning party on the 22nd, which drew an
all-ages dance party with Tiny Cover Band
incredible crowd of artists and their families. While adults mingled over the snack table, Columbia College's Art Education Department kept the kids busy with a collage project based on included artist Anne Toebbe's layered domestic collage-paintings. Tiny Cover Band played an energetic set of tweaked indie classics on child-sized instruments, and at one point handed out small percussion instruments (maracas, bells and clappers) so everyone could join in. The result was a transformative all-ages dance party that brought everybody together on the dance floor.

One of a handful of recent exhibitions in which parenthood is a point of discussion, Division of Labor has already drawn some positive attention, including a Critic's Pick on and and a notable mention in the Chicago Tribune's Best Visual Art of the Year. Cultural ReProducers is excited to present the final installment of our childcare-supported event series there on January 31st. More on all that very soon.

Candida Alvarez on the relationship between family & abstraction
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On Wednesday, December 10th Cultural ReProducers launched its new zine, Propositions, Manifestos & Experiments, at Sector 2337 with the event Co-Occupations, a multimedia extravaganza organized with Caroline Picard that featured presentations by artists connected with both the zine and the Division of Labor show.

After introductions, Christa Donner kicked things off with the Cultural ReProducers

Manifesto and later shared an excerpt from Palle Nielsen's "Model for a Qualitative Society." Thea Liberty Nichols read from Ellen Lanyard's short essay in the influential M/E/A/N/I/N/G #12, Lise Haller Baggesen performed her new "Yo Mama" essay, Candida Alvarez shared a slideshow considering the influence of both motherhood and daughterhood in her work, Fred Sasaki's how-to videos created with his father and young son were screened, Claire Ashley delivered her own manifesto alongside images of relevant work, and Keiler Roberts brought her deadpan humor to the floor with a live comics reading. Husband-and-wife duo The Speers rounded out the evening with a thrumming electronic sound performance while their two-month-old baby dozed in the back room. All in all, it was a lively, jam-packed evening.

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