Chicago – Inaugural Expo Chicago opens tomorrow, Wednesday, September 19th, 2012

September 18th, 2012

Expo Chicago via The Chicagoist
Image: Expo Chicago via The Chicagoist

Expo Chicago opens with a VIP vernissage tomorrow evening to benefit the Museum of Contemporary Art, Chicago. Many blue-chip New York galleries are participating this inaugural year, including big names like Matthew Marks, The Pace Gallery, Luhring Augustine and David Zwirner, as well as other international galleries like Yvon Lambert. In the Exposure section, younger galleries like DODGE gallery and Kate Werble will be exhibiting.

The fair is the brainchild of Tony Karman, a veteran of Chicago art fairs, including Art Chicago at the Merchandise Mart. The fair will be held at Navy Pier, where Art Chicago was held in the 1980s and 90s. The idea is to reach collectors in major U.S. cities apart from New York and Los Angeles such as Tulsa, Kansas City, St. Louis, Minneapolis, Cleveland, Dallas and Houston.

Tony Karman via the Sun Times
Image: Tony Karman via The Sun Times

The four-day event will feature 100 selectively-chosen galleries, exhibiting both modern and contemporary art and design in larger, more spacious booths.

Several events are planned surrounding the fair, such as tours of some of Chicago’s most prominent private collections, curator-led tours of public exhibitions and studio visits with Chicago’s top local artists. Chicago native Theaster Gates, who is represented in Chicago by exhibitor Kavi Gupta, slated to participate in a project at the fair. Gates’s work is currently included in dOCUMENTA (13) and is the subject of a solo show at White Cube.

The caliber of galleries, special events, chef selection and the modifications to the booths will add up to a succesful fair, Karman is betting. “The litmus test is the quality of our exhibitors,” Karman said. “That’s the draw.”

– F. Sanchez

Expo Chicago
The Chicago Tribune
The Art Newspaper