Steve Ruiz

From this Author

Paw at Arcade Fine Arts

Pat O'Connor. Savant, 2015; gouache, acrylic and pen on paper, framed; 23 x 21cm. Courtesy of the Artist and Arcade Fine Arts, London.

The very idea that the plastic arts could provide a surface for human expression stands on the belief that an artist’s physical actions include elements both conscious and unconscious, and therefore expressive. On a paper or canvas, or in any matter able to preserve a human trace, the psychic interior of a person could be made visible through marks animated by thought and spirit and[…..]

Theaster Gates: Freedom of Assembly at White Cube Gallery

Ground Rules (Scrimmage), 2015; wood flooring; 100 3/16 x 147 2/16 in. Courtesy of White Cube. Photo: Ben Westoby.

Freedom of Assembly is Theaster Gates’ second solo exhibition with London’s White Cube Gallery. Having won the Artes Mundi prize in January, Gates is currently receiving praise for his installation at this year’s Venice Biennale. Freedom of Assembly comes at a high point in the artist’s career, showing a new tendency to reflect and reconfigure, though by way of a comparatively conventional sculpture and painting show[…..]

New Image Painting at Shane Campbell Gallery

New Image Painting, 2014; installation view, Shane Campbell Gallery, Chicago. Courtesy of the artist and Shane Campbell Gallery.

What sets New Image Painting at Shane Campbell Gallery apart from this year’s other sleepy season closers is not the work selected, which is a standard collection of represented artists and friends of the gallery, but rather an unusually confrontational framing within painting’s past and present history. As the curator’s statement explains, New Image Painting offers a “platform from which to critique the prevalence of[…..]

David Schutter: What Is Not Clear Is Not French at Rhona Hoffman Gallery

At first appearance, David Schutter’s paintings appear almost blank, somewhere between painterly gray monochromes, awfully dry and dead, and overwrought images obliterated into neutral tones. Closer up, the grays separate into more grays—a brighter golden, a deeper charcoal, a greenish dead-moss, and so on—while the seemingly uniform surface opens into a surprising depth of layered brushwork. Like his drawings, Schutter’s paintings are intense accumulations of[…..]

Evan Gruzis: Shell Game at The Suburban

Evan Gruzis. Free Box, 2014; Textile dye and acrylic on canvas; 48 x 32 in. Courtesy of the artist.

Located more than nine miles west of Chicago’s city center, The Suburban is one of a number of alternative spaces that have caught on in the bordering village of Oak Park. It’s quiet, affluent, and easily accessed by public transit, yet Oak Park is an unlikely host to such alternative spaces as Terrain Exhibitions, The Franklin, and The Suburban, all of which locate innovative art[…..]

John Sparagana: Crowds & Powder at Corbett vs. Dempsey

John Sparagana. Crowds & Power: The Revolutionaries, 2013; archival inkjet prints with oil stick, sliced and mixed, on paper; 58 x 92 in. Courtesy of the artist and Corbett vs. Dempsey, Chicago. Photo: Tom Van Eynde.

John Sparagana fatigues images by manipulating them. First he scans pictures and runs off inkjet prints, then he crumples the pictures in his pocket and kneads the glossy paper for days or weeks until the sheet’s fibrous structure is loosened. The result is a soft fabric more than double in size, with its original image lightened and diminished on the new surface, appearing like a[…..]

Sofia Leiby: The Drama of Leisure at Devening Projects

Sophia Leiby. Untitled, 2013; mixed media on canvas, 22 x 18 in. Courtesy of the Artist and Devening Projects + Editions, Chicago.

Sofia Leiby‘s first solo exhibition in Chicago, titled The Drama of Leisure, consists of fourteen paintings and three runs of screen prints. Now on view at Devening Projects + Editions, Leiby’s paintings and drawings are clearly influenced by her experience as a printmaker. In most works, the artist paints as if the brush were a thick, wet crayon, and she sketches and fills with rapid[…..]