Chicago Calling: Art Against the Flow
June 29, 2018–January 6, 2019
Curated by Kenneth Burkhart and Lisa Stone
Chicago Calling: Art Against the Flow explores Chicago’s history of robust recognition and early acceptance of self-taught and outsider art and artists. The present and future positioning of outsider art (made by artists who have had little influence from mainstream art) in relation to that mainstream art world will be addressed, variously, in the exhibition and accompanying catalog, symposium and educational programming. Curated by Kenneth Burkhart and Lisa Stone, the exhibition presents intrinsic themes embodied in the works of 10 artists, including Chicago icons, Henry Darger, Lee Godie Joseph Yoakum and others. Themes found in several artists’ works and represented here include the psychologically-charged tension in oppositions and contradictions; interaction between high style and the vernacular, between nature and culture; drawing on memory and the expressive use of line and form as a survival mechanism; immigration and/or relocation as a defining experience; surviving the African-American experience; and the power of portraiture as a view into society, psyche and soul. It is essential that the Chicago/Intuit voice be heard in this worldwide conversation. Organized and traveled by Intuit: The Center for Intuitive and Outsider Art, Chicago Calling: Art Against the Flow will premier and be on view at Intuit from June 29, 2018–January 6, 2019, in Chicago. La Halle Saint Pierre (Paris) and the Prinzhorn Collection (Heidelberg) have committed to showing the exhibition in 2019 as has Collection de l’Art Brut (Lausanne) in 2020.
Chicago Calling: Art Against the Flow is part of Art Design Chicago, an exploration of Chicago's art and design legacy, an initiative of the Terra Foundation for American Art with presenting partner The Richard H. Driehaus Foundation.
Chicago Calling: Art Against the Flow is funded by the Terra Foundation for American Art and The Richard H. Driehaus Foundation.