CHSO December 2011 : Page 104

...continued 8 9 1 7 10 6 3 2 4 5 On The Make It’s impossible to name the “best” visual artists, but here’s a snapshot, alphabetically, of who’s selling, creating and cutting it with critics now: 1. Laura Cartwright abstract photography has explored light and shadow. Her work has been showcased in museums and galleries worldwide, but last year she dazzled locally with a solo show at the Tony Wight Gallery. While Cartwright is best known for her abstract portraits, she recently co-founded the Revolving Collections Gallery, a venture that allows her to use her artistic and curating talents in collections for commercial and residential clients. 5. Matthew Lew 4. Jessica Labatte 2. Dan Gunn 3. Barbara Kasten Since the 1970s, Kasten’s The president of her own marketing firm, Malpass has exhibited her nature-inspired abstract paintings since 2006. Her pieces, made with natural composites, have been on display at the continued... 104 | | December 2011 MaTThew Lew phOTO by Maia harMs A fast-rising painter, Gunn’s work has lately gravitated toward the 3-D realm. A group exhibition at Monique Meloche in January, 2011 resulted in a critically lauded solo show in September. Photograpaher Jessica Labatte, known for her creatively manipulated images of detritus found in Chicago alleys and other colorful shapes, is on a roll: She was recently part of threewalls’ Community Supported Art program, and is working on a solo show for Golden gallery’s New York location in April. It’s hard to get more Chicago than Lew: In 2009, the mixed-media artist was commissioned to create “Sun Rise”: a 22x9-foot painting to commemorate the 40th anniversary of Lake Point Tower. He recently designed a line of home products for CB2 and opened an eponymous River West Gallery in 2010. Woman Made Gallery and Indiana’s South Shore Arts 64th Annual Salon Show. 9. J.C. Steinbrunner 7. Josh Moulton A longtime local favorite, Moulton opened a gallery in Lincoln Park this year to showcase his paintings, which often capture Chicago landmarks. 8 Pete Nawara The painter’s fall exhibit at Mark Shale Project Space attracted more than 100 supporters on opening night; half of the show sold during the party alone. A distillation of his earlier black-and-white landscapes, Steinbrunner’s latest work boldly embraces color. 6 Robin Malpass Nawara’s latest project, The Mirror Conspiracy , features subjects posing in front of the camera as if it were a mirror; the images are then given an innovative pop art treatment. Also a live artist, Nawara has toured with bands like the Black Keys. 10. Jessica Stockholder One of the biggest names in the Chicago art world, conceptual artist Stockholder recently was named Chair of the Department of Visual Arts at the University of Chicago.

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