Mixed media collages by Betsy van Die prompt global questions of preservation.
Mixed media collages by Betsy van Die prompt global questions of preservation.
June 19

Site-specific Works Explore an Ephemeral Urban Landscape

On June 10 the Chicago Tribune highlighted Site Specific, an exhibition of small, mixed-media collages by Continuing Studies alumna Betsy van Die (Young Artists’ Studio Program). On view through July 19 at the Boocoo Cultural Center and Café in Evanston, the artist's works combine photographs of condemned Chicago buildings with found objects collected on site, acrylic paint, charcoal, pastels, and colored pencil. Ninety percent of the structures captured in van Die’s works have since been demolished, a fact that underscores her interest in the ephemerality of the urban landscape. “Chicago has yielded a rich and endless array of urban decay and site relics. In some cases, the retrieval of objects carries some risk because of the location, condition of the site, or the fact that the area has been cordoned off and I photograph and pick up objects covertly,” van Die says.