Next Art Chicago 2012: Curatorial Focus Renews Historic Fair

Next Art Chicago 2012: Curatorial Focus Renews Historic Fair

Next Art Chicago

December 7, 2011

Next Art Chicago 2012
Opening Night Preview benefiting the Museum of Contemporary Art, Chicago
Thursday April 26, 2012

Public Hours
Friday, April 27 through Sunday, April 29

Next Art Chicago, the newest art fair to emerge from the producers of The Armory Show, will debut a curatorial approach to the traditional fair model this spring. The international fair of contemporary art will breathe new life into the Chicago marketplace through a new core exhibition, and a renewed mission to revitalize the historic fair.

Executive Director Staci Boris will lead the curatorial vision, drawing on her 20 years of curatorial experience at the Museum of Contemporary Art, Chicago and Spertus Museum. “The focus of the 2012 edition of Next Art Chicago is the art,” said Ms. Boris. “With our commitment to quality, dialogue, and diversity, we are building a show that is substantial, enduring, and thought-provoking. We believe our exhibitors will have great success with this new structure and our visitors will be impressed and engaged.”

New to the 2012 fair is Exclusive, an innovative exhibition series presented within Next Art Chicago which will include one work each by approximately 20 world-renowned artists. The annual exhibition series will provide a unique visual and educational experience for fair attendees. The 2012 exhibition will highlight and celebrate the extraordinary artists leading Chicago’s preeminent arts programs, including Dawoud Bey, Jeanne Dunning, Michelle Grabner, Joseph Grigely, Judy Ledgerwood, Laura Letinsky, Dan Peterman, Jessica Stockholder, Catherine Sullivan, and Tony Tasset. In a model new to the Chicago fair, the works in the Exclusive exhibition section will be lent by the artists and available for sale through their galleries.

This model of “art fair as exhibition” will extend into the fair structure, with a focused and thoughtfully installed presentation of 100 galleries and 20 solo project spaces in the iconic Art Deco Merchandise Mart building, at its prominent location on the Chicago River—ideally situated downtown between gallery and cultural arts districts. In a strategic move to the expansive and flexible 7th Floor space, Next Art Chicago will dedicate nearly three quarters of the 200,000 square foot floor plan to public space, exhibitions, and a video component. The new floor plan will be fresh and easily navigable, presenting a cohesive aesthetic identity designed by a vetted architectural team.

The Museum of Contemporary Art, Chicago, the longstanding beneficiary of the fair, will host the exclusive First Focus Opening Preview event on April 26, 2012. The celebrated spring vernissage benefit will be hosted by the Women’s Board of the MCA as an opportunity to preview the fair the evening before it opens to the public from April 27–29, 2012.

Next Art Chicago is a merger of Art Chicago, the longest running contemporary art fair in the United States, and NEXT – The Invitational Exhibition of Emerging Art, and will provide collectors, curators, and art enthusiasts with the opportunity to experience the most compelling art of our day. The expertise of Next Art Chicago offers exhibitors the opportunity to reach seasoned collectors through an unforgettable and distinct arts-intensive weekend. The broad spectrum of exclusive access includes private collector and corporate collection tours, curator-led tours of exhibitions at premiere cultural partner institutions, and artist studio tours.

Galleries may apply by December 15, 2011 for consideration as an exhibitor in the 2012 edition of Next Art Chicago. Please click here to submit your application.

For further details please contact:

Staci Boris
Executive Director


Ken Tyburski

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Next Art Chicago
December 7, 2011

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Next Art Chicago will be in touch.


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