Opening Reception: Friday, June 3, 2016, 6-9pm

June 3 - July 31, 2016

The Ukrainian Institute of Modern Art is pleased to present “Ruminate,” a three-person exhibition of work by Robin Dluzen, Cydney Lewis and Allison Svoboda. For these three Chicago-based artists, contemplative thought processes address the confluence of and contrasts between humans and nature, using a vast range of meaningful, tactile materials.

For Robin Dluzen, the intersection of labor and landscape is at the core of her practice, and here, a new series of charcoal drawings on stretched lawn-refuse bags consider the artist’s mother’s 30-year career as a horticulturalist. In this exhibition, Dluzen redraws the precisely rendered botanical drawings created by her recently retired mother over the course of her tenure; Dluzen preserves the gestures of her mother’s hand (and even her signature), combining them with her own in works that truly have two authors, collaborating decades apart.

Cydney Lewis, too, looks to everyday materials, both embracing the lowness and the unaesthetic nature of man made matter like plastic paper towel wrapping and dry cleaning bags, and also completely transcending their humble origins. In her installation pieces, the twisted, wired plastics become extraordinarily laborious, vivid recreations of flora. Accompanying these sculptural pieces are a series of ink drawings, taking cues from the aesthetics of black and white films to address a number of symbolic dualistic tensions, including that of race.

Created during a recent fellowship studying Zen and traditional artistic techniques in Japan, Allison Svoboda exhibits a number of multimedia works that use fractals found in nature as catalysts. In her collage works, thousands of brushstrokes on paper are torn and reassembled into a monochromatic, wall-bound mandala. In Svoboda’s Scorched Vestments, a burning incense stick is the sole mark-making tool. Cotton sheets hand dyed with indigo shibori are suspended from the ceiling, suggesting a kind of soft, temple-like architecture. Light refraction from the Vernal Equinox is featured in a video piece. Together, these varied materials and processes create a rich, meditative experience.

A catalog is published in conjunction with the exhibition, featuring an essay by artist and art critic, Alan Pocaro.
Order catalog – HERE

Preview the exhibit – HERE


Chornobyl – Artists Respond

On the occasion of the disaster’s 30th anniversary, the Ukrainian Institute of Modern Art has commissioned a fine art print portfolio project and exhibition entitled, “Chornobyl – Artists Respond.”

UIMA invited 30 Chicago artists to participate in this project, each artist creating an edition of 40 original prints for the portfolio in remembrance of the event. The artists, who come from different cultural backgrounds, approached this project from unique perspectives, reflecting on their individual experiences and knowledge of the Chornobyl disaster. The completed prints feature a range of themes, from scenes of the Chornobyl accident and its aftermath, to commentary on its current state, and its correlation to other nuclear accidents. Just as varied as the artists’ points of view are the techniques with which they chose to create their prints, from the traditional media of screenprints, etchings and lithographs, to more unconventional methods incorporating natural and non-art materials.

While this portfolio is composed of a multitude of voices and perspectives, they are all united in remembrance. Though Chornobyl was 30 years ago, it is clear that the disaster and its memory
are just as potent today.

Preview exhibit Chornobyl: Artists RespondHERE

Order catalog Chornobyl 30 years laterHERE

Featured image:
Angee Lennard
Chornobyl Tour®, 2015
15 x 11 in.