Jul 22nd 2016

A Fine Line

@ Chicago Artists Coalition

217 N Carpenter St, Chicago, Illinois 60607

Opening Friday, July 22nd, from 6PM - 9PM

On view through Thursday, August 11th

Chicago Artists Coalition is pleased to present “A Fine Line,” a group exhibition featuring HATCH Residents Austen Brown, Alex Calhoun, Angela Davis Fegan, curated by Kate Pollasch.

“A Fine Line” features artists Austen Brown, Alex Calhoun, and Angela Davis Fegan who, in their own visual languages, employ dichotomies, subversive gestures, and formal plasticity within the gallery space, to blur the division between perception and reality. Through these formal dialects, the artists poise questions about modernism and phenomenology, mine urban socio-economic ideals, and challenge sexual politics and norms. What appears to be a utilitarian object meant for functionality is a poetic sculptural gesture, and what looks to be the seductive swath of glitter reveals itself to be corporeal fluid hardened in a new form. In “A Fine Line,” formal disorientation and material evidence draw attention to the ways in which standards, norms, and policy permeate and condition our daily lives.

Austen Brown considers the inherent social and economic implications of space and architecture by excavating the modern history and current legacy of two Chicago sites: Marina Towers and the Raymond Hilliard Tenement Homes. Alex Calhoun engages with material history, standards of measure, and functionality to create sculptural works inlaid with sophisticated humor. In Angela Davis Fegan’s Lavender Menace project she employs the visual aesthetics of DIY culture and Pinterest to create brightly colored text-based posters that, upon closer investigation, subvert their normative identity to become a call to arms for queer politics, body positivity, and radical feminism.



Austen Brown is an artist living in Chicago, IL holding his Master of Fine Arts from the School at the Art Institute of Chicago. Using geography and a site-based practice, he works with sound, video, and installation to draw conceptual lines between sites, exploring the relationships of people to place. His work has been shown internationally at Super-Sensor, Madrid, Spain; EXPO Chicago, IL; ACRE, Chicago, IL; Switched on Garden with funding from the Pew Charitable Trust, Philadelphia, PA; Flat Gallery, Chicago, IL; LODGE, Chicago, IL; Delaware Center for the Contemporary Arts, Wilmington, DE; Rebekah Templeton Contemporary Art, Philadelphia, PA. In 2014, he was an artist-in-residence at ACRE and has received awards including the Municipal Arts League Fellowship, Siragusa Foundation Fellowship, and New Artist Society Scholarship (SAIC).

Alex Calhoun is an artist living and working in Chicago, IL, where she received her BFA from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago and her MFA from the University of Chicago. Alex is primarily concerned with material histories and function, continually placing pressure on the relationships between historical forms and contemporary materials. Often incorporating humor into her practice, she believes that there’s something really serious about that which makes us laugh.

Angela Davis Fegan is a native of Chicago’s South Side. A graduate of Chicago’s famed Whitney Young High School, she received her BFA in Fine Arts from New York’s Parson’s School of Design. She is a recent graduate of Columbia College Chicago’s Interdisciplinary MFA program in book and paper arts. Angela has mounted shows at the University of Illinois at Chicago’s Montgomery Ward Gallery, the Flatiron Building (Chicago), and the MC Gallery (New York). She has been featured in Muzzle Magazine’s Best In Print Issue, and her art has been selected for book covers including How to Seduce a White Boy in Ten Easy Steps by Laura Yes Yes and The Truth About Dolls by Jamila A. Woods.


Kate Pollasch is an art historian, curator, and writer.

She serves as Associate Director at Rhona Hoffman Gallery and has previously held positions with The Art Institute of Chicago, The Roger Brown Study Collection, and the American Visionary Art Museum, Baltimore. Her curatorial practice interrogates preexisting notions of history and normativity through queer tactics, network theory, archival studies, and considerations of affect and digital pedagogy. In 2012, she curated the exhibition “Roger Brown: This Boy’s Own Story” of Chicago Imagist artist Roger Brown’s artistic relationship to HIV, sexuality, mortality, and Chicago’s gay leather community. The exhibition unearthed previously censored artworks and archival materials from Brown’s career and resulted in Brown’s induction into the Visual AIDS Artist Registry.

Pollasch holds a MA in Modern art History and Theory and an MA in Arts Administration and Cultural Policy from The School of the Art Institute of Chicago. She holds a BA in Studio Art and Art History from Saint Mary’s College of Maryland. She has lectured extensively, including speaking at The Chicago History Museum, The Art Institute of Chicago, and The University of Chicago.

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