Jul 9th 2022

Chicago Works: Gregory Bae, Opening Reception

@ Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago

220 E Chicago Ave, Chicago IL 60611

Opening Saturday, July 9th, from 1PM - 3PM

On view through Sunday, January 29th

Please join us in celebrating the opening of Chicago Works: Gregory Bae with a reception in the Commons and a performance by sound artist Kikù Hibino in the Kovler Atrium. This event is free with museum admission and open to the public.

Hibino’s electronic music set was conceived during his recent artist residency in Bae’s hometown of Salt Lake City, UT. Throughout his time in Utah, Hibino considered the relationship between the landscape and music, particularly the connections between the lines found in rock stratifications and lines referenced in musical notation systems, melodies, and harmonies. His performance will build upon this research and respond to the use of lines within Bae’s Ex Radios, a collage that is on view in Chicago Works: Gregory Bae.

Time is a central material within the work of Gregory Bae (b. 1986, Salt Lake City, UT; d. 2021, Chicago, IL). Throughout this exhibition—the artist’s first solo museum presentation—everyday objects loop, stutter, or fail: a tire spins atop a treadmill, clocks tick in place, and acrylic frames preserve torn sheets of paper. By choreographing scenes of paused time, Bae imagines the possibility of resisting the inevitable forces of aging, deterioration, and separation.

Meticulously rendered landscapes—cloud-filled skies drawn in graphite, rain drops engraved into glass, a horizon filmed at daybreak—appear throughout the artist’s work, which attempts to overcome distances both physical and cultural. In particular, translation and travel between the United States and South Korea are recurrent themes throughout the exhibition.

While Bae’s projects speak in the broadest terms of time and space, they also carry traces of his personal experiences as a first-generation Korean American, moving fluidly between the universal and the intimate. Time, distance, and desire are inextricably linked within the artist’s work, in which twin impulses—to expand time and to overcome distance—are informed by feelings of longing: to inhabit two places at once, to preserve something as it is, or to share more time with someone.

Chicago Works: Gregory Bae is organized by Nolan Jimbo, Marjorie Susman Curatorial Fellow. It is presented in the Dr. Paul and Dorie Sternberg Family Gallery and Ed and Jackie Rabin Gallery on the museum’s third floor

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