November 7, 2019

Julia Fish: bound by spectrum
Architectural Annotations
Remember Where You Are

DePaul Art Museum

Julia Fish, Threshold –fragments : Matrix [ spectrum with grey ] and Plans [ spectrum : east to west ], 2014–15, revised 2018–19. Transfer chalk and oil on canvas. Courtesy of the artist. Photo: Tom Van Eynde

DePaul Art Museum presents three exhibitions organized on the occasion of the Chicago Architecture Biennial. Together, the exhibitions consider the influence of architecture, geography, and place on individual narratives and experiences.

Julia Fish: bound by spectrum
Curated by Julie Rodrigues Widholm, Director and Chief Curator

For three decades, Julia Fish has used her house and its vernacular architecture—a 1922 Chicago storefront designed by Theodore Steuben—as the basis for a system of mapping color, form, and light in paintings and works on paper. Julia Fish: bound by spectrum presents a survey of the last decade of the artist’s paintings and works on paper while providing new scholarship around her ongoing project that brings together the disciplines of painting, drawing, and architecture. This is the first major museum survey of Fish’s work in more than 20 years and debuts three new paintings. Rendering architectural details, specifically thresholds, at actual size and from observation, Fish creates a subjective response to objective information, informed by effects of light in space, time of day, the seasons, cardinal direction, and her own physical vantage point. Fish examines and recontextualizes evidence of her house within paintings, which elude pure abstraction. They are, in fact, depictions of transitional spaces filtered through Fish’s increasingly complex visual logic.

The exhibition is accompanied by a fully-illustrated catalogue published by DePaul Art Museum, designed by Studio/lab, and distributed by the University of Chicago Press. It includes essays by Widholm, independent curator Kate Nesin, architect Dan Wheeler, and author Colm Tóibín, as well as a selection of more than 10 years of previously unpublished studio notes by the artist.

Architectural Annotations
Guest-curated by Julia Fish

Accompanying her solo exhibition, Fish guest-curated a selection of works on paper, drawn largely from DePaul Art Museum’s collection, that gives context to her own engagement with domestic and public architectural space. Fish identified plans, views, and elevation studies by the Burnham Brothers, Douglas Garofalo, and Giovanni Battista Piranesi to demonstrate the impact of learning directly from significant architecture in Chicago and Rome. The exhibition also features musical scores inspired by architecture, specifically contemporary American composer Andrew Norman’s The Companion Guide to Rome (2010), a set of musical “portraits” reflecting his response to nine churches and basilicas. Fish consulted with Norman and composer, scholar, and curator Anne Leilehua Lanzilotti to present reproductions of Norman’s working sketches adjacent to Lanzilotti’s annotated performance scores for viola, as well as graphic analyses developed in her 2016 dissertation on The Companion Guide To Rome.

Remember Where You Are
Curated by Mia Lopez, Assistant Curator

Remember Where You Are presents work by four emerging artists based in San Antonio and Chicago who use performance, sculpture, and textiles to make visible untold narratives of culture and place. While questioning practices of exclusion and inequity, their works are informed by layering personal and public histories to imagine new methods for navigating and mapping the world around us, from the cotton fields of South Texas and origins of Route 66, to living rooms in Miami and public parks in London. Jimmy James Canales, Jenelle Esparza, Melissa Leandro, and Emilio Rojas explore the geographies and memories that form the context through which they establish their sense of self. The materials used in their work reflect experiences both personal and shared, suggesting distinct perspectives on familiar concepts of home, culture, and family.


November 9, 2–3pm
Performance: Emilio Rojas
Gallery performance by Emilio Rojas addressing colonialism and oppression across history and geography.

November 9, 3–4:30pm
Monumental Resistance: Public History and Social Justice
Benjamin Johnson, Ross Jordan, Joey Mogul, and Mia Lopez discuss art, placemaking, and activism.

January 29, 6–7:30pm
Architectural Annotations gallery conversation + book signing
Julia Fish in conversation with architect Dan Wheeler and Graham Foundation Director Sarah Herda.

January 30, 6:30–9pm
Inspired by Architecture: Scores, Plans, and Paintings
Panel and concert exploring the connections between art, architecture, and music.
Holtschneider Performance Center

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