Oct 15th 2017

Balas & Wax: For the Wanderer


3522 W. Franklin Blvd. Chicago IL 60624

Opening Sunday, October 15th, from 2PM - 5PM

On view through Sunday, November 19th

In “For the Wanderer,” Balas & Wax invite viewers to consider mobility, temporary shelter, and communion in an installation referencing the holiday of Sukkot, an empty hotel ballroom, and our desire to rejoice even in unsettling times. These themes nod to The Franklin’s unique permeable structure that leaves it simultaneously sheltered and exposed. The exhibition transposes two kitchen tables as sites of conviviality and bounty. An expansive drawing of a set banquet hall invites visitors to engage the space’s potential energy. With the roof of The Franklin removed, the structure will resemble a sukkot, or one of the booths built for the joyous harvest festival commemorating a 40-year period of wandering.

2 – 4 p.m., Saturday, November 4, 2017

Reading Under the Table

Balas & Wax host a celebration of wandering and shelter that will include “readings under the table” by poets and artists responding to the exhibition’s themes.

Balas & Wax is the ongoing collaborative art practice of Susy Bielak and Fred Schmalz. Our work mines social histories, texts and archives—using poetry, ethnography, and multimedia production to create writing, installations, performances and public works.

Susy Bielak is an artist, writer, curator, programmer and educator whose projects have ranged from a happening staged on a seismic shake table, to prints pulled from engraved Formica kitchen tabletops. Collaborators have included rodeo cowboys, bus drivers, a veteran barbershop quartet, choreographers and engineers. Bielak’s work has been exhibited and collected nationally and internationally, including by the International Print Center, Luis Adelantado Mexico, San Diego Museum of Contemporary Art, and Walker Art Center. Her artwork and writing have been published in Art Papers, New American Paintings, and Poetry Magazine, among others. Bielak received her MFA from the University of California San Diego.

Fred Schmalz is an artist, poet, and editor whose current work focuses on textual response to encounters with dance, music, architecture, and visual art. His book Action in the Orchards will be published by Nightboat Books in 2019. Recent writing has appeared in a variety of publications including most recently Against the Picture – Window: A Time of the Phoenix Compendium, Spinning Jenny, and Conduit. His score “Measures” appeared in the Present Tense pamphlet series in 2016. His field guide Claes Oldenburg’s Festival of Living Objects was published for a series of gallery walks by the Walker Art Center in 2013. He publishes Swerve Press.


3522 W. Franklin Blvd, Chicago IL 60624
Hours: Saturdays 2-5PM and by appointment
Instagram #thefranklinoutdoor
Twitter @TheFranklinCh

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