Highlighting Chicago’s cultural development during the first half of the 20th century, "They Seek a City" showcases work by 18 alumni from SAIC’s early years, such as Archibald John Motley, Jr.'s "Self-Portrait," c. 1920.
Highlighting Chicago’s cultural development during the first half of the 20th century, "They Seek a City" showcases work by 18 alumni from SAIC’s early years, such as Archibald John Motley, Jr.\'s "Self-Portrait," c. 1920.
March 13

Early SAIC Alumni Showcased in Art Institute's New Exhibition

The Chicago Tribune named They Seek a City, an exhibition at the Art Institute of Chicago featuring work by eighteen early SAIC alumni, its “Pick of the Week” on March 6. Highlighting the waves of migration and immigration that shaped Chicago during the first half of the 20th century, the exhibition focuses on art produced by the diverse communities that made the city their home. In an article published by the Reader on February 24, Deanna Isaacs spotlights the inclusion of “immigrants from eastern Europe and Mexico, southern blacks who were part of the Great Migration,” noting, “to its credit, the School of the Art Institute was open to these artists when most of its peer institutions were not." Featuring paintings, works on paper, photographs, sculpture, and decorative arts, the exhibition includes work by alumni Emil Armin (1919), Richmond Barthé (1924-1927), Bernece Berkman, Aaron Bohrod (1926-1928), Margaret Burroughs (BFA 1942, MFA 1948), William Carter (1930), Eleanor Coen (BFA 1950), Eldzier Cortor (1938–1939), Walter Ellison, Leon Garland, Todros Geller (1918–1922), Max Kahn (1926–1927), Archibald Motley, Stanislaw Szukalski, Dox Thrash (1914, 1919–1923), Alex Topchevsky (BFA 1936, MFA 1942), Morris Topchevsky (1919–1921), and Charles White (1937).