Chicago is home to some of the world’s greatest art museums. What’s less known is that it’s also a thriving gallery town boasting a variety of commercial galleries, non-profit art centers, and university galleries located throughout the city with original works by up-and-coming and established artists.
Here are some of best of Chicago art galleries:
This apartment gallery in Pilsen features emerging, particularly technology-based artists doing groundbreaking work. Curator and founder, Miguel Cortez, finds artists who are enjoy chatting with visitors. Not a typical “art world” gallery, a donation gets you a free beer you can imbibe while you peruse.
Not your typical Chicago art gallery, the Carrie Secrist Gallery displays edgy, thought-provoking exhibitions mainly by established contemporary artists plus a smattering of up-and-comers. This is a great place to get a handle on the pulse of the current Chicago art scene. Do not miss Kim Keever’s water tank diorama photography or Derek Chan’s abstract Native American paintings.
Set in River North, Edelman’s basement gallery is celebrating its 30 year anniversary this year and is one of the best contemporary photography galleries in the Midwest. With a mix of exhibits from new and established photographers, Edelman is now hosting Sandro Miller’s “Malkovich, Malkovich, Malkovich” where Miller and John Malkovich pay homage to iconic American photography, one of the hottest pop art exhibits in Chicago.
The DePaul Art Museum offers free admission to a constant rotation of contemporary exhibits that seek to create social awareness and engagement within our current cultural reality. DePaul also has a sizable collection only available online by appointment through their website.
This bright and large space houses the eccentric and intensely colorful work of late Ed Paschke, one of Chicago’s most well-known artists and teachers. Also on display are is a recreation of his studio with source material and other ephemera. The back gallery exhibits other artists including the photo exhibit, “Warhol, Reed, and Bowie,” through Jan. 15.
All Star Press is a newer gallery on the scene in Logan Square, opened by Galerie F co-founder and screenprinter, Zissou Tassef-Elenkoff, also of Fugscreens. The gallery focuses on local artists, mostly working with screenprints, but also expanding into street, photography, and other cool mediums. An awesome side note: IPaintMyMind will be hosting gallery shows at ASP beginning in the Spring of 2018!
The country’s only nonprofit organization devoted to contemporary self-taught art, Intuit houses over 1,000 works by artists who were never formally trained, a concept that’s gaining widespread traction with museums and collectors. Music, lectures, and art programs are also regular occurrences at the Intuit.
This is Chicago’s largest collection of curious, odd and monstrously grotesque art works on display and for sale. In an occult-inspired environment, the shop features some of the most affordable and beautiful taxidermy in the city and hosts local artists, art classes and tarot readings. Browse while waiting to get inked at Revolution Tattoo next door.