Mar 18th 2023

NEWTOK: Seen and Unseen

A Collaborative Exhibition by Jennifer Cronin and Dusty Patches

NEWTOK: Seen and Unseen captures life in the Anthropocene, both in its beauty and its complexity. [salonlb.] is proud to present the long-awaited collaborative exhibition and album debut by Jennifer Cronin and Dusty Patches that profoundly documents the reality of the climate crisis.


Jennifer Cronin is a Chicago-based visual artist, known for her meticulously rendered paintings which explore the mystery and complexity of everyday life. Jennifer’s work has been exhibited widely, both nationally and internationally. In support of her recent series documenting the detrimental impacts of climate change, she was awarded a grant from the Elizabeth Greenshields Foundation and a fellowship by the Vermont Studio Center. Jennifer’s work has been featured on NPR, Newcity, and Sixty Inches from Center. Her work has been included in exhibitions at the Elmhurst Art Museum, Museo Internazionale Italia Arte, and the Grand Rapids Public Museum as well as galleries at Google and Argonne National Laboratory. Her work was awarded best in show by juror Eric Fischl in a group exhibition at the Buchanan Center for the Arts. Jennifer received her BFA in painting from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. She is represented by Elephant Room Gallery and [salonlb.] in Chicago.


Dusty Patches is the electronic project of Patrick Mitchell, a Chinese-American Artist and veteran of the Chicago DIY community. Mitchell is a multi-instrumentalist, producer & songwriter known for his primary roles in Chicago bands New Color, Whiskey Wise, and De Triomphe. After years fronting bands, Mitchell began posting videos of live synth jams on YouTube under the name Dusty Patches in 2016. Dusty Patches fuses Mitchell’s deep understanding of music with his mad-scientist like pursuit of synthesizer fetishism. His approach relies on a sophisticated technical understanding of hardware integration and workflow, through which he produces compositions that are highly complex in melodic structure, rhythmic evolution, and tone. Mitchell’s synthesizer craze started with an exploration of the Teenage Engineering Operator 1 (OP-1) and Pocket Operator synthesizers. A selection of these compositions were released in 2018 as a double EP cassette titled “Filthy Four Track Machine volumes I + II” (Sooper Records). In 2020, Dusty Patches released Nocturnal Emissions from the Dablatory, his first project fully realized with modular synthesis.

Simple Pleasures and Silver Linings: An Unseen Universe

A Solo Exhibition by Renee Robbins

Simple Pleasures and Silver Linings: An Unseen Universe is a mini retrospective of Robbins’ vast body of work that explores the dynamic world and its complex relationships between humans, nature, and the cosmos, through luminous visual environments both real and imagined. This exhibition immerses the viewer in an otherworldly landscape of flowering botanicals and celestial bodies viewed at the microscopic and telescopic levels, as it surveys Robbins’ wondrously detailed collections of paintings and etchings.


Renee Robbins is a Chicago-based visual artist who layers biomorphic forms to create detailed otherworldly environments. She has been awarded public art commissions with Chicago Public Art Group, Wabash Arts Corridor, and Illinois’ Art-In-Architecture program. She has exhibited widely, including exhibitions at Lois Lambert Gallery, Santa Monica, CA; Peggy Notebaert Nature Museum, Chicago, IL; Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory, Batavia, IL; and the Alden B Dow Museum of Science and Art, Midland, MI. Press features include PBS WTTW Chicago Tonight, Chicago Gallery News, Chicago Magazine, Inside/Within, and an audio interview on Ahtcast. The forms in her paintings have been classified by a diatom taxonomist in an artist feature on the US Diatoms database at the University of Colorado. Honors include three grants from Chicago Department of Cultural Affairs and a 2021 grant from the Illinois Arts Council to develop her current work. Robbins received her MFA from Michigan State University and has been working in Chicago since 2007.

“I create detailed visual environments that consider the complex relationships between humans, nature, and the cosmos. Through painting, I explore the dynamic world as I travel between tiny and gigantic scales in the unseen universe. Moving between the real and imagined, my work brings together microscopic and telescopic views. I position hybrid flora/fauna within a space that simultaneously evokes the deep sea and the night sky. That includes cells, flowering botanicals, aquatic species, and celestial bodies. By creating associations between things that are seemingly disparate in scale and form, my work brings questions or sparks a curiosity about the universe. This abstract space is luminously populated with dots, circles, and hieroglyphic-like marks. In this way, my images reflect biodiversity and provide an opportunity to connect deeply with nature by creating wonder.” – Renee Robbins



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Chicago, Illinois 60609

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ABOUT [salonlb.]:

[salonlb.] is a multidisciplinary exhibition space and event venue in Chicago designed to engage critically with the arts, a forum supporting emerging and mid-career artists, with an emphasis on sculpture, mixed media, and contemporary craft.

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