A Lived Practice

City Farm, Chicago, founded by Ken Dunn. Photo: Greg Lindsey

September 20–December 20
Various locations

Can a life practice be an art practice? With this fall program of exhibitions, symposium, events, and books, the School of the Art Institute of Chicago explores the role artists can play in shaping the future.

A Proximity of Consciousness: Art and Social Action
September 20–December 20
Reception: Friday, September 19, 6:00–9:00 p.m.
Sullivan Galleries, 33 S. State St., 7th floor

Joseph Beuys, Untitled (Sun State), 1974
August 8, 2014–February 6, 2015
The Art Institute of Chicago, Modern Wing, 159 E. Monroe St.

Visiting Artists Program:
In Dialogue: Claire Doherty and Claire Bishop
Thursday, October 2, 6:00 p.m.
Rubloff Auditorium, 230 S. Columbus Dr.

A Lived Practice Symposium
November 6–8
The Art Institute of Chicago, Fullerton Hall, 111 S. Michigan Ave.

Chicago Social Practice History Series
Published by the School of the Art Institute of Chicago
Distributed by the University of Chicago Press

Oxherding: A Buddhist Parable
September 20–November 8
Sullivan Galleries, 33 S. State St., 7th floor

For more information, visit the A Lived Practice website.


A Proximity of Consciousness: Art and Social Action

Paul Durica, Pocket Guide to Hell's Haymarket Reenactment, 2011. Photo: Yoni Goldstein

September 20–December 20
Sullivan Galleries

At the core of Chicago's intellectual and creative life stand these influential artists for whom this city itself was a springboard for a new way of thinking about art at the intersection of society. Their work has influenced generations, having made social practice a worldwide phenomenon. This exhibition brings their ideas alive through 10 newly commissioned projects. Exhibiting artists: Jim Duignan, Pablo Helguera (BFA 1993), Iñigo Manglano-Ovalle (MFA 1985), Dan Peterman, Pocket Guide to Hell, J. Morgan Puett (BFA 1981), Michael Rakowitz, Tamms Year Ten and Laurie Jo Reynolds (MFA 2000), Temporary Services, and Rirkrit Tiravanija (MFA 1986).

More information


The Dining Room


September–December, 2014
Sullivan Galleries

The Dining Room at the Sullivan Galleries is a monthly public event consisting of writing workshops, live work, and discussion.


Creative Resistance in a Prison Nation

Chicago Torture Justice Memorials and Amnesty International's 1st Annual Participatory Memorial Action, 2014. Photo: Sarah Ross


September 25, October 9, November 13, 2014
Sullivan Galleries

Decebmber 11, 2014
Jane Addams Hull-House Museum

In the last decade, a growing number of artists, organizations, and activists in the Chicago area have created artwork and developed responses to what is now termed a "prison nation." The US locks up more people than any other nation in the world and exhausts more resources on confinement and punishment each year. One in 99 adults in the US is incarcerated; the financial and social costs to tax payers and communities is staggering. Conservatives, liberals, and members of the left have all called for policy changes, yet when violence and poverty rage in Chicago neighborhoods, the common response is a call to lock more people away for longer prison terms.

Creative culture has been at the forefront of changing the public perception about the realities of social segregation, poverty, violence, and incarceration. Chicago-area artists have staged performances and exhibitions, created organizations, and developed long-term projects to alter entrenched thinking and unsettle business-as-usual.

What kinds of projects are happening that create a culture of change? Can art decarcerate? Change the law? Liberate communities from violence? Envision and enact new futures?

Join us for a monthly forum to learn about creative projects happening in the city that confront, agitate, and dismantle the prison nation.

See the A Lived Practice site for more information and detailed event descriptions.


2015 MFA Guest Curator Presentation: Hamza Walker


Monday, December 8, 2014
Sullivan Galleries Conference Room

Hamza Walker is Director of Education and Associate Curator for the Renaissance Society at the University of Chicago. Recent exhibitions include Teen Paranormal Romance (2014), Suicide Narcissus (2013), and John Neff (2013). He is the recipient of the 1999 Norton Curatorial Grant and the 2004 Walter Hopps Award for Curatorial Achievement. In 2010 he was awarded the Ordway Prize for his significant impact on the field of contemporary art.


Alternate Endings: In Commemoration of World AIDS Day

My Barbarian, Counterpublicity,  HD video commissioned for World AIDS Day, Day With(out) Art


Monday, December 1, 2014
Sullivan Galleries

In recognition of World AIDS Day, Day With(out) Art was launched by Visual AIDS in 1989 as a day of action and mourning in response to the AIDS crisis. In conjunction with its 25th anniversary, Visual AIDS announces Alternate Endings, a program of original short videos shown at international screening events, gallery presentations and for online distribution. Visual AIDS worked with filmmaker Tom Kalin to commission seven artists/collaboratives—Rhys Ernst, Glen Fogel, Lyle Ashton Harris, Hi Tiger, Tom Kalin, My Barbarian, and Julie Tolentino—to create new and provocative work about the ongoing HIV/AIDS pandemic by focusing on the issues of today. 



Fall BFA Show


November 1–14, 2014
Sullivan Galleries

More than 80 talented SAIC students completing undergraduate degrees this fall exhibit their innovative work. SAIC promotes crossing disciplines and challenging assumptions, and the results of this approach are showcased in this exhibition.


Tokyo University of Arts: Student Lectures


November 13, 2014
Sullivan Galleries

Students from SAIC's partner school will present key concepts and aesthetics of Japanese art and culture with reference to art practice characterized by approaches to nature. Lectures will touch on fine art and aesthetics, traditional cultures of Noh and Kabuki, question of "Japanese-ness", and use of "ambiguity", self/others, inside/outside, life/death, and space/time in Japanese contemporary Art.


Lived Lives: Empathetic Encounters

November 12, 2014
Sullivan Galleries

Lived Lives, started in 2006, emerged from a collaborative research process between an artist, a scientist, 104 Irish suicide-bereaved families, and many others. With informed consent and active engagement of participating families, a series of site-specific interactive installations and public conversations were co-created, co-curated, and presented to the wider public. Through truthful collaboration and without judgment or censure, this work intends to move people toward an empathetic positions, creating an alternative space to understand, reflect upon, and challenge the silence and stigma around youth suicide.

Seamus McGuinness is an Irish artist, researcher, and educator. He lives and works in Co. Clare, on the west coast of Ireland and lectures in Contemporary Textiles at Galway-Mayo Institute of Technology. His practice is deeply rooted in life and cloth, encompassing research, durational social intervention, interactive installations, public conversations, and collective democratic acts. In 2010 he was awarded a PhD for the Lived Lives Project, which was conducted within the School of Medicine and Medical Science, University College Dublin.


2015 MFA Guest Curator Presentation:
Lucía Sanromán

November 10, 2014
Sullivan Galleries

Lucía Sanromán is an independent curator and writer who lives between Mexico City and San Diego, CA. Her current focus lies in investigating aesthetics in relation to efficacy and public practice. From 2006 to 2011, she served as Associate Curator at the Museum of Contemporary Art San Diego. Recent projects include Proyecto Coyote for Encuentro Internacional de Medellin 2011 (MDE11), and Anomalia for the University Art Gallery at UC San Diego (2012). She was also recently a lecturer in the contemporary art symposium SITAC: estar-los-unos-con-los-otros in 2013. She is co-curating, with Candice Hopkins, the next edition of SITE Santa Fe's signature Biennial SITElines.2014: Unsettled Landscapes (July 2014), and is currently organizing the retrospective exhibition inSite: Cuatro ensayos de lo público sobre otro scenario for La Tallera, in Mexico (2014). Sanromán was also the 2012 Warhol Foundation Curatorial Research Fellow for the upcoming show Citizen Culture: Art and Architecture Shape Policy, an exhibition and research project which she is organizing for the Santa Monica Museum of Art and opening September 2014.


Oxherding: A Buddhist Parable

Max Gimblett, Ox Forgotten, sumi ink on paper

October 3–November 8, 2014
Sullivan Galleries

Celebrated New York painter Max Gimblett partners with award-winning author Lewis Hyde for Oxherding: A Buddhist Parable, a fresh, American take on the "Ten Oxherding Pictures," a venerated Buddhist story from 12th-century China. This exhibition presents a series of 10 sumi-ink paintings by Gimblett, each one matched to a set of letterpress-printed poems in Chinese with three multilayered English translations by Hyde. It is accompanied by a pair of jointly produced artist books. The 10 picture/poem vignettes tell the story of an elusive ox and a herder whose quest to find and tame the animal becomes a metaphor for the struggle toward Buddhist enlightenment.

Oxherding has been organized for tour by the Gund Gallery at Kenyon College and previously shown there and at the Japan Society, New York, where the exhibition originated. Lewis Hyde will speak on November 6 as part of the Visiting Artists Program and A Lived Practice symposium.


2015 MFA Guest Curator Presentation:
Allison Peters Quinn

November 3, 2014
Sullivan Galleries

Allison Peters Quinn is the Director of Exhibitions at the Hyde Park Art Center in Chicago where she has curated exhibitions and produced symposia, performances, and publications since 2004. She has organized significant exhibitions for emerging and established artists such as Cándida Alvarez, Juan Angel Chavez, and Theaster Gates. Awarded the Ramapo College Curatorial Prize, she has served as a juror for the Artadia Award, Efroymson Award, Oklahoma Visual Arts Coalition Fellowship Awards, Community Arts Assistance Grant Program, and the Ragdale Foundation.

Her writing has appeared in Proximity Magazine and artists' monographic publications including William Steiger: Transport (2011) and Altogether Mutable: The Work of Mary Lou Zelazny (2009), and most recently in Service Media: Is it Public Art or Art in Public Space published by Green Lantern press. Peters Quinn earned an MA at the Center for Curatorial Studies, Bard College, and a BA at the University of Wisconsin-Madison.


MAAT 30th Anniversary Celebration Exhibition

October 2–18, 2014
The LeRoy Neiman Center Lobby, 37 S. Wabash Ave.

Master of Arts in Art Therapy (MAAT) department is excited to celebrate the thirtieth anniversary of their founding. Distinguished alumni of the program will exhibit their various works throughout the space. The MAAT department will also be hosting an event on Friday, October 10 from 6:00–9:00 p.m. to celebrate the success of the past thirty years, as well as honor MAAT founder and Midwest art therapy pioneer Don Seiden.


Surface Tension

Bachar Bachara, Intersection (detail), 2014


August 26–October 4
Sullivan Galleries

Surface Tension showcases projects by current MFA and BFA students as selected through portfolio reviews by the SAIC Exhibitions and Exhibition Studies Committee. This year's exhibition is rooted in exploratory and critical modes of making and viewing. Featuring work by Selva Aparicio, Bachar Bachara, Simon Belleau, Naama Hadany, Kevin Lee, Kelly Lloyd, Leah Mackin, Gulsah Mursaloglu, Jacob Raeder, Yong Chu Son, Daniel Spangler, and Leonard Suryajaya. Curated by Graduate Curatorial Assistants Cassie Carpenter (Dual MA 2015) and Elisabeth Smith (Dual MA 2015), with Curatorial Assistant Taylor Hughes (BA 2016).


Faculty Projects

Andrew S. Yang, Makeshift Geology (an Anthroposcene) (detail), 2013


August 26–October 4, 2014
Sullivan Galleries

Faculty Projects is an annual exhibition that presents work by SAIC faculty who have recently completed sabbatical leave. By sharing their current work with the school community, faculty can communicate how their research, projects and work contribute to the local, national, and international art and design community. The 2014 Faculty Projects exhibition features work by Claudia Hart, Anke Loh, Lou Mallozzi, Helen Maria Nugent, Carolyn Ottmers, A. Laurie Palmer, Roxie Tremonto, and Andrew S. Yang. Curated by Assistant Director of Exhibitions Morgan Walsh (Dual MA 2012).


ATTACHMENTS: AIADO and Fashion Graduate Exhibition

June 7–July 3, 2014
Sullivan Galleries

On view during NeoCon, North America’s largest design exposition, ATTACHMENTS features 19 works by graduating design students in the Master of Fine Arts in Designed Objects; Master of Design in Designed Objects; Master of Design in Fashion, Body and Garment; Master of Architecture with an Emphasis in Interior Architecture; and Master of Architecture programs.

It celebrates single components as well as the bonds between them. Featured works seek connections within personal and public environments through collaborative experience, collective involvement, and physical and emotional attachment to objects as they represent histories or map behaviors.

The exhibition is curated and designed by faculty members Odile Compagnon and Ania Jaworska, with graduate assistant Jessica Moss (MA 2015). Reinforcing the concept of exchange, the exhibition layout allows for conversations between disciplines, each allotted to a specific area but linked together within a promenade, which is punctuated by larger installations.

Featuring designers: Ceyda Akosman, Kathie Chung, Tim Fates, Steve Jae Seok Kwak, Youngeun Kwun, Hao Liu, Berthold Marckwardt, Joshua McVey, Kristen Moreau, Jed Morganstein, Fei Nie, Carlos Ortega, Zachary Pino, Christopher Smith, Lindsey Whittle, Dante Wilkins, Tyler Willis, Ah Ron Won, and Man Yuan.

Also on view are installations from the SAIC courses whatnot, Thing Lab, and Advanced Shape and Theory and the GRFY Studio course Publi©ity.

visit the ATTACHMENTS website


Graduate Design Exhibition 2014

Eli Sidman (MDDO 2013), WonderVision

June 7–July 3, 2014
Sullivan Galleries

Showcasing design from the Departments of Architecture, Interior Architecture, and Designed Objects, and Fashion Design, this exhibition brings together thesis work by graduating students that explores recent innovations in material, technology, and form.


Post-Baccalaureate Exhibition 2014

Mary Reinehr Gigler (Post-Baccalaureate Certificate in Fashion, Body and Garment, 2013), Get Free, digitally-printed textile, garments

June 7–July 3, 2014
Sullivan Galleries

The Post-Baccalaureate Exhibition presents work by artists completing their Post-Baccalaureate Certificate in Studio and Fashion, Body and Garment.

Featuring artists include: Sarah Bastress, Pame Bueno, Lucia Calderon-Arrieta, Yixiao Chai, Abbye Churchill, Malone Detro, Katherine Doyle, Juan Camilo Guzman, Christine Han, Joanne Kim, Megumi Maruyama, Miri Phelps, Tyler Polk, Sarah Rabeda, Risa Recio, Erina Shibata, Jessica Stanfill, Sangeun Sung, Orkideh Torabi, Jackie Tufford, Bryant Worley, and Ran Zhao.


MFA Show Spring 2014

Naama Arad (MFA 2014), I would prefer not, 2010

April 26–May 14, 2014
Sullivan Galleries

The MFA Show is the culminating presentation of MFA candidates and an opportunity for new and ambitious work to be presented to the public. For four months, graduating MFAs work with a team of three distinguished Guest Curators and 11 Graduate Curatorial Assistants to envision the exhibition. This invested approach allows for dialogue, process, and collaborative decision-making to bring the MFA Show to fruition over time.

This year's Guest Curators are Naomi Beckwith (Curator, Museum of Contemporary Art, Chicago), Sarah Urist Green (Curator and Host, The Art Assignment), and Cortney Lederer (MFA 2009—Director of Exhibitions and Residencies, Chicago Artists Coalition).

For more information on participating artists, the curatorial teams, and to see the making of the MFA Show in process, visit


ARTBASH 2014: Contemporary Practices Exhibition

Elizabeth Housewright (BFA 2016)

April 12–25, 2014
The LeRoy Neiman Center, 37 S. Wabash Ave., floors 1–3

First-year students from the Department of Contemporary Practices exhibit new interdisciplinary art and design works. Students have the opportunity to participate through site-specific proposals, an open call for work, and by faculty nomination.

Related events:

FIRST Catalog Release Party
Saturday, April 11, 4:00–7:00 p.m.
Sharp Building, 37 S. Wabash Ave., room 213

FIRST Catalog is a publication of work made by CP students in the first semester of their freshman year. The book is designed in collaboration with d.Studio. FIRST 2014 was designed by Lizzie Callen (BFA 2014).

GIF wwwrapped II
Friday, April 11, 4:30–7:00 p.m.
Sharp Building, 37 S. Wabash Ave., room 215

An exhibition of URL-based work.

Friday, April 11, 6:00–7:00 p.m.
Sharp Building, 37 S. Wabash Ave., rooms 326 and 327

An exhibition of performance and time-based work.

48.24.12 Video Contest
Saturday, April 12, 4:30–7:00 p.m.
Gene Siskel Film Center, 164 N. State St.

A live juried screening of student films, shot and edited in 48 hours and submitted as part of the 48.24.12 competition.


Spring Undergraduate Exhibition

Travis Tiblier (BFA 2014), Beach Mart, 2013
Travis Tiblier (BFA 2014), Beach Mart, 2013

March 15–April 2, 2014
Sullivan Galleries

More than 300 talented SAIC students completing undergraduate degrees this spring exhibit their innovative work. SAIC promotes crossing disciplines and challenging received assumptions, and the results of this approach are showcased in this exhibition.


The Art of Connection

February 1–15
Sullivan Galleries 

The Art of Connection exhibition showcases artwork by graduate Art Therapy students and the individuals they work with at their internship sites. Artwork in the show reflects the varied settings, populations, and practices of art therapy and represents a culmination of the Master of Arts in Art Therapy program at SAIC.


Proj*ect Pro*ject

Thursday, January 16, 2014
Sullivan Galleries

This one-night event takes over the north Sullivan Galleries. Bring your video files, laptops, and/or devices and connect them to projector stations throughout the galleries and show your work. All SAIC students, alumni, faculty, and staff are invited to participate. Just sign-up for a time slot on the night of the event. First come, first served.

Proj*ect Pro*ject Participation Details [PDF]

Let us know you're coming so we can prepare accordingly. Email your RSVP to exhibitions-saic@saic.edu. All are invited to stop by and see the works on view as they change throughout the evening! The galleries are free and open to the public.

Please note participants will be asked to sign an SAIC loan form and agree to exhibit original work for which they own the copyright. Participants must secure permission to exhibit the work from all individuals appearing within their work. In the event that SAIC deems a work inappropriate or offensive, we retain the right to cease projection.


Tracing Affinities

Hyounsang Yoo, Ribbon Cutting #2 (detail), 2013

December 14–February 15, 2014
Sullivan Galleries 

Tracing Affinities presents new projects by current students and recent alumni selected through portfolio reviews by the SAIC Exhibitions and Exhibition Studies Committee. Resulting from the continued conversations, exchanges, and new understandings shared between participating artists and curators, the exhibition envisions connections between the range of conceptual and material investigations presented in the show. Tracing Affinities is curated by Graduate Curatorial Assistants Catalina Acosta-Carrizosa (Dual MA 2015) and Raven Munsell (Dual MA 2014).

Featured artists include Kayla Anderson, Jase Flannery, Lindsey French, Aram Han, Kim Harty, Jeremiah Jones, Soohyun Kim, Christina Kostoff, Daniel Luedtke, Billy McGuinness, Rosalina Perez, Sabri Reed, Rose Sexton, Sarah Williams, and Hyounsang Yoo.