Zakaib is pleased to present Welcome to Your Body, a group exhibition of works by Aay Preston-Myint, Latham Zearfoss, Gordon Hall, Amanda Assaley and Matt Ryan, Tess Davey, and Gareth Kaye curated by Evan Fusco.
Welcome to Your Body brings together a suite of artists engaging with the corporeal matter of the body. Through an examination of the mechanisms through which we filter and index these forms, and what those forms could look like when filtered and indexed, the artists push our ability to comprehend those bodily forms further. The importance of communities and communal acts in our evaluation of the body is teased out in Assaley and Ryan’s and Zearfoss’s work. Davey and Kaye take documentation and photography and their material counterparts as points of departure to understand the body as depiction, and how depiction can evoke that frame. Hall’s work uses intimate touch between hands, feet, arms, legs and the occasional torso or head and an object as a space of palpable intimacy which can be instructive for our own movement in the world. Preston-Myint’s work uses reflectivity as a space of introspection to turn on its head in order to challenge a preconception about the unmediated reflection of the human.
Aay Preston-Myint is an artist, publisher, and educator based in Chicago, USA. His practice employs both visual and collaborative strategies to investigate memory and kinship, often within the specific context of queer community and history. In addition to his own work in interdisciplinary media, he is a founder of No Coast, an artist partnership that prints and distributes affordable contemporary artwork, is co-director of the Chicago Art Book Fair, and has served as a DJ and organizer for Chances Dances, a party supporting and showcasing the work of queer artists in Chicago.
Latham Zearfoss works in Chicago, where they produce time-based images, objects and experiences about selfhood and otherness. Outside of the studio, they contribute to collective motions toward joy and reflection through social projects such as a queer dance party (Chances Dances), a critical space for white allyship (Make Yourself Useful), and an itinerant conference on socially-engaged art (Open Engagement). Latham graduated from The School of the Art Institute of Chicago with a BFA in 2008 and the University of Illinois at Chicago with an MFA in 2011. They have exhibited their work, screened their videos, and DJed internationally and all over the U.S.
Gordon Hall is an artist based in New York. Hall has exhibited and performed at SculptureCenter, The Renaissance Society, Brooklyn Museum, Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago, Whitney Museum of American Art, Movement Research, EMPAC, Art in General, Temple Contemporary, Night Club Chicago, Kent Fine Art, Foxy Production, Hessel Museum at Bard College, White Columns, Wysing Arts Centre, Abrons Arts Center, Socrates Sculpture Park, and Chapter NY, among others. Hall’s first institutional solo show will take place at the MIT List Center for Visual Arts in April and May of 2018. Gordon Hall has launched lecture and performance programs at MoMA PS1, Recess, Interstate Projects, The Shandaken Project at Storm King Art Center, and at the Whitney Museum of American Art, producing a series of lectures and seminars in conjunction with the 2014 Whitney Biennial. Hall’s writings and interviews have been featured in a variety of publications including Artforum, V Magazine, Randy, Bomb, Title Magazine, Walker Art Center’s Artist Op-Ed Series, What About Power? Inquiries Into Contemporary Sculpture (published by SculptureCenter, 2015), Documents of Contemporary Art: Queer (published by Whitechapel and MIT Press, 2016), and Theorizing Visual Studies (Routledge, 2012). Hall was awarded a LMCC Process Space Residency, a Triangle Arts Foundation Residency, the LMCC Workspace Residency, and attended the Skowhegan School of Painting and Sculpture, ACRE, and the Fire Island Artist Residency. Hall holds an MFA and an MA in Visual and Critical Studies from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago.
Amanda Assaley is an artist living and working in Chicago. She received a BFA from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago and is the founder and director of Zakaib, a project space located in Avondale, Chicago. In collaboration with other artists, activists, and organizations such as Syrian Community Network and Arab American Family Services, she regularly organizes public events and panels advocating for the rights of immigrants, refugees, asylum seekers, and Arabs within the United States. In 2017, she was a recipient of the Ellen Battell Stoeckel Fellowship for the Yale School of Art at Norfolk Residency.
Matt Ryan received his BFA from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago. He is an artist living and working in Chicago. His work has exhibited at the Terrain Biennial, IL; Sullivan Galleries, IL; Gallery X, IL; 4e, IL. He is the organizer of three somewhat annual outdoor shows: The Uhaul-Show, The Beach Sculpture Show, and The Campfire Sculpture Show.
Tess Davey is a Canadian artist currently based in Chicago, Illinois. Through an interdisciplinary practice, her work engages with notions of the archive, particularly the capacity for banal objects to construct proximal relationships which reference the one who has placed them. Her work aims to draw attention to personal spaces and items, as well as images and documents which insinuate the body and function as its record. Clothing as a denotation of scale and growth are of particular interest in such projects. From 2015 to 2017 she attended the Beal Art Program at H. B. Beal Secondary in London, Ontario where she specialized in photography. Davey has presented artist’s talks at the University of Western Ontario and the Beal Art Program. In 2017 she was awarded a Presidential Merit Scholarship at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago, where she is currently enrolled in the Scholars program and seeking her BA in Visual and Critical Studies.
Gareth Kaye is a Chicago based artist, writer, curator and co-director of Apparatus Projects, an artist run space in Chicago’s Lincoln Square neighborhood.
Both Aay Preston-Myint and Gordon Hall will have affordable works available for purchase at the show.
Zakaib is an artist-run project space located at 3491 N Elston Ave. The space holds exhibitions and programs such as screenings, artist talks, and workshops. We promote work that engages the community of Avondale in expansive art practices that share the intersectional concerns of the people we impact. We have stakes in the livelihood of the artists and neighbors of our communities and are committed to advocating for each other.
There is great urgency and necessity for active spaces that operate on bases of equity and human rights. Zakaib was created out of our frustrations with the behavior of business-like art spaces, and we are continually working to establish a future of art spaces prioritizing ethics and empathy. Exhibitions show work ranging in formats including visual, time-based, and written work. All of our events are always free and open to the public.