There’s a vibe throughout the hallways that’s unmatched here at the Zhou B. Art Center, and more specifically the 4Art Gallery. It’s almost as if Pharrell Williams had a baby with Van Gogh, and the building on 35th street was their love child. It’s very hip. Needless to say, every third Friday of the month, the art center opens its doors to the public. This past Friday was no exception and definitely offered an escape to those who have been hiding indoors under many layers of clothing during this abnormally cold, Chicago winter. The bar may have also helped.
The 4Art Gallery, home to an ever-changing collection, was my home base for the night. Surrounded by killer abstract and figure paintings, sculpture works, and photography compositions, droves of people steadily poured in. I found myself in the midst of a fantastically eclectic array of individuals and engaging in many conversations. For instance, I found that the sweet Christine Winquist became worried that viewers would not understand her tedious process of building a sculpture out of cardboard, and then painting the object in variations of white and gray. I assured her that I felt it made sense. Another exhibiting artist that caught my eye was found object extraordinaire, Keri Colestock. From her funky wardrobe and the feathers in her hair to her open-book personality, I could see the woman reflected in the work hanging upon the walls. She oddly reminded me of my mother, with her zealous attitude and razzle dazzle accessories. Paul Pinzarrone is another artist that I talked to during the night. I was fascinated by his explosion of digital imagery, and even more so as he explained their complexity.
The night went on with more people trickling into the space, as I carried on a conversation with inquiring art connoisseurs. Most times directing them to, artist and gallery owner, Robin Monique Rios. Overall, I would say that my first 3rd Friday as a new intern was a huge success. I started to envelop myself within the environment, and felt cool to be part of the edgy art world that I longed for. I met many different people from all walks of the earth, and enjoyed every second of it. If a packed building full of inspired individuals doesn’t rev your artistic engine, then the pieces on display will draw you into this creative environment alone. I am definitely looking forward to next month.