RISK considers the interdependent role of empathy and risk in socially engaged art as practiced by Chicago contemporary artists. The exhibition focuses on artists who work in a public arena and foster connections between individuals and communities. They seek to activate communities, invite the outside in, blur the lines of public/private, reveal our mutual dependencies and effect social change. The porous, process-based art form of social practice, however, exists in unpredictable environments where the artist alone cannot guarantee the "success" or "failure" of a work. To various degrees, the artists relinquish control and work with methods that are often at odds with typical expectations of art.
The artworks in RISK are divergent in medium, content and scope, but share an interest in engaging and negotiating the “other” through personal interaction. Projects range from community dwellings built in the gallery to massive site-specific dinner parties to live video portraits projected onto the street. Working with cultural partners and sites across the city, RISK highlights some of the most exciting projects emerging in this field and explores artists' motivations and viewer’s expectations for engaging in social art practice.
Curated by Amy M. Mooney and Neysa Page-Lieberman, with collaboration from Hyde Park Art Center, 6018 North, and Rebuild Foundation.
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