THE SEEN | Chicago's International 
Journal of Contemporary & Modern Art
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Issue 25: November

by Kostas Prapoglou

Prem Sahib is one of those young artists that since graduating have dynamically taken over the British capital by storm. His show Side On at the Institute of Contemporary Arts (ICA) in London is the latest of a series of shows since he graduated from the Royal Academy Schools in 2013.

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by Tara Plath

It is not an easy task to charge someone with accepting the potential for psychosocial states or national borders to affect physical objects. In the United States, we continue to stand on seemingly stable ground, prone to reactionary politics and knee-jerk responses to unfounded claims. Perspective is often seen as a concept better left alone, lest it get in the way of fact. Raad’s survey works against these things. It is slow and somewhat obscure. The exhibition requires two things: active participation—the conscious decision to engage with material that is deliberately unclear—and a suspension of belief, a challenge well worth anyone’s time.

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In Conversation with Stephanie Cristello

For British photographer John Stezaker, the truth happens on stage. The body of work included in The Truth of Masks, currently on view at Richard Gray Gallery in Chicago, is serially formulaic—a collection of collage works that marry two types of images, one plainly placed over the other, to create one seamless surface—yet resists any type of easy categorization of experience. While the images Stezaker works with belong to pre-modern period, these works are intensely contemporary. By coalescing two antiquated forms of image making—vintage postcards and Hollywood film stills—into a single frame, these combines hold the status of the image in an unapologetically tenuous position. They operate as illusions in plain sight.

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by Kostas Prapoglou

There is a multi-reference practice in this exhibition that viewers have to come to terms with—art enthusiasts and professionals might feel that this exhibition is a good opportunity to brush up their art history. From the cut-outs of Henri Matisse, the formulaic high realism and the color vibrancy of David Hockney (with special reference to his Fresh Flowers 2011 show at the Royal Ontario Museum featuring the iPhone and iPad drawings), Keith Haring, Roy Lichtenstein and Patrick Caulfield, the distinctive style of Alex Katz in both portraiture and landscape, the plant paintings of Lucian Freud, to Richard Hamilton’s structural arrangement and axiality of the work surface and the aesthetics of the Josef Frank textile designs, we are continuously bombarded with a vast repertoire of artistic practices spanning several decades of art history.

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The Chicago Art Critics Forum convened the city's top art writers for a discussion on the status of local coverage in internationally circulated and distributed publications. The panel, moderated by Stephanie Cristello (Editor-in-Chief, THE SEEN) featured Zach Cahill (Afterall, Artforum), Caroline Picard (ArtSlant, THE SEEN, Artforum), and Zeenat Nagree (Artforum). Volume II will follow in 2016.
Image: Stephanie Cristello, Caroline Picard, Zeenat Nagree, and Zach Cahill at Kavi Gupta Gallery, Door Hinges by Jessica Stockholder.
Next Edition in Print

Issue 02 will be publishing in Spring / Summer 2016. The free full-color journal will continue to feature exclusive pieces and new commissions on the best in international contemporary art. 

Image up top: Prem Sahib. Detail from Looking for One 2015. Wood, ceramic tiles, grout, jesmonite, paint, polished steel, resin, multisurface cleaner, ashtray. 120 x 405 x 195 cm

 For more information about EXPO CHICAGO/2016