Chicago Gallery Snack Report: Friday, March 12th

by Jeriah Hildwine
Photographs by Stephanie Burke


FRIDAY NIGHT!!! Steph and Jeriah hit the town for art, wine, and snacks.


A table full of La Croix flavored sparkling water at Catherine Edelman.

"Water?  You mean like in the toilet?"  We started off our night at Catherine Edelman, who is distinguished in two ways:  one, along with Stephen Daiter (who, we found out later, was having a closing reception for Matrin Parr's excellent show, this same night) she's one of two major galleries in Chicago dedicated entirely to photography (David Weinberg also shows a lot of photography, along with other work), and two, all she ever serves is sparkling water.  (Okay, so no, it's not like the stuff you'll find in your toilet, unless you're super rich and flush your toilet with flavored sparkling water.)  She also closes at 7pm, giving her gallery the earliest bedtime of any of our usual haunts.  Despite the challenges presented by her early closing and lack of snacks (or even booze!), we always make it a point to catch Edelman's openings, since she consistently shows some interesting photography.  Check out the slideshow for images from the show.

Catherine Edelman -
300 W. Superior. Seen and Unseen, work by Keith Carter. Reception 5-7pm.

After Edelman, we headed down to the Principality of Podmajersky,
a.k.a. Pilsen East, a.k.a. the Chicago
Arts District
, which was having their monthly Second Fridays
gallery night.  We started off at the Chicago Art Department
for the Festival of Dionysus. 


Jeriah hits up the wine at Chicago Art Department. They also had peanuts.

Divinely costumed ladies beckoned us in from their pedestals in the window; one of them tried to convince me to trade my trademark kilt for her wispy gown.  I politely resisted the temptations of these sirens and made my way to the bar. 


Peanuts and pretzels on the bar at Chicago Art Department.

CAD was serving red and white wine, and beer.  They also had a bowl of peanuts and a cup with a few pretzel sticks in it.  Personally, I'm not a fan of pretzels in their hard, dry, snack form; give me a hot and fresh giant pretzel, covered in salt and mustard, and that's a whole different wonderful animal.  Peanuts, though, I'm fond of, although I'm not really sure why they always make me feel like an elephant when I eat them.  Is this a circus thing?  Or is the the manual dexterity required to open the shells, reminding me of the incredible tip of the elephant's trunk?


Stephanie with our cups of wine, courtesy of Chicago Art Department.

In an odd note, the bartender mentioned that they were running low on wine, bemoaning, "Why doesn't anyone want to drink beer?"  I didn't answer her question, taking it as rhetorical, but I'll do so now:  we could see the bottles of wine on the bar, and didn't KNOW that there was beer!  Also, it was called the Festival of Dionysus, so wine kind of went with the theme.  I stuck with the wine, but after informing Steph that beer was an option, she gave her wine away and went back for beer.  Thanks for the beer, the wine, and the peanuts, Chicago Art Department!  Check out the slideshow for images from the opening.


The snacks at Logsdon 1909: snack mix, nuts, pretzel sticks, brownie bits, and some mystery sweets. There was also wine.

Our next stop was Logsdon 1909, one of the better venues in Pilsen.  This month they're showing "A Gift of Grace, Revisited," work by Jake Oxnard in ceramic and other media.  They had their usual array of diverse snacks, including snack mix, mixed nuts, pretzel sticks, brownies, what might have been "blondies" (the cocoa-free brownie alternative, mentioned in my last snack report on Home Gallery), and some other sweet snack squares. 


Jeriah getting his wine, courtesy of Logsdon 1909.

They also had red and white wine.  Steph and I each had a cup of red, checked out Oxnard's work, and then headed off.  Thanks for the wine and snacks, Logsdon 1909!

Logsdon 1909 - 1909 S. Halsted

St. A Gift of Grace, Revisited, work by Jake Oxnard. Reception 6-10pm.

The exhibition space at 1915 S. Halsted. If there were snacks, I must have missed them.

A few doors down from Logsdon 1909 is the exhibition space at 1915 S. Halsted.  I'm not sure but I think this may be rented out directly by Podmajersky/Chicago Arts District on a month-by-month basis as a temporary exhibition space.  This month was a show called, I believe, "Blind Date," or something like that, featuring visual art inspired by writings, and visa versa.  There were no snacks, or if there were, I must have missed them.


The amazing and delicious snacks at Rooms Productions: pineapple, almonds, GOOD GRAPES, brie with honey, and crackers. There was also Two Buck Chuck. Great snacks, guys!

After we'd wrapped up our tour of the galleries on Halsted, we headed up 18th St. to our favorite place in Pilsen, ROOMS Productions.  This month's production is Meaning Machines, in which blindfolded performers walk around a carpeted square, prompted by audio cues to recite passages from literature and some other, original, material.  You could walk on the carpet, creating the very real (and anticipated) risk being bumped into by one of the performers.  So, for this reason, you had to keep the wine off the carpet; otherwise there would have a been a lot of spills.


Performers in action in Meaning Machines at ROOMS Productions in Pilsen.

ROOMS always sets up a good array of snacks, and this month was no exception.  Followers of the Snack Report may recall the Great Grape Fiasco of 2009; these readers will be relieved to hear that ROOMS has now sourced some quality grapes!  They're really whetted my appetite for late summer, when I can start foraging grapes off my neighbor's fence.  They also had pineapple, almonds, brie with honey on it, crackers for the brie, and some cookies.  I really enjoyed the snacks, as well as the performance, and my hushed conversations with Todd and Marrakesh. 


Performers in Meaning Machines at ROOMS Productions.

These guys are awesome, they always have great snacks, and put on really good shows.  They are really worth the trip down to Pilsen, regardless of what else is going on.  Rumor is that they'll be re-performing Meaning Machines next month, for April's Second Fridays.  Keep an eye on their website, and Stephanie's weekly postings here on Art Talk Chicago, for updates.  Get down there and check 'em out!

ROOMS Productions
- 645 W 18th St. Meaning Machines. Reception 7-10pm.


Beer at PostPilsen.

Our next stop was PostPilsen for Synthetic/Sublime, a group show of abstract painting by Megal Louis, Racer LeVan, Emre Kocagil, Ji Soo Hong, and Katherine Havarth. 


Jeriah's like a necrophiliac, always eager to crack open a cold one.

Their snacks consisted of several 30 packs of Pabst Blue Ribbon,
conveniently located on the windowsills right next to the front door. 
Thanks for the beer, PostPilsen!

- 1816 S. Racine. Synthetic/Sublime, work by Megan Louis Racer LeVan
Emre Kocagil Ji Soo Hong and Katherine Harvath. Reception 7-11pm.


The bar at Midnight Snack. There was plenty of Pabst, but no actual snacks. Thanks for the beer, though!

As your faithful Snack Reporter, I was understandably excited to hear about the opening of a show called Midnight Snacks at 1366 Space.  (Hey guys!  If you have a website, I couldn't find it!  Get one!  If you're not sure how, the good folks at Other People's Pixels did a great job on mine, super easy and very affordable.)  Well, it wasn't at midnight and there weren't any snacks, per se, but there was a ton of beer!  This was emphasized by periodic PA announcements about the venue's imminent closing (at 10:00 or thereabouts), coupled with invitations to "come drink all this beer."  I was happy to oblige.  If you missed the opening, they're having a closing reception, Friday, April 9, from 6:00pm to 9:00pm.


Jeriah, happy with a can of Pabst and a nice little painting of a submarine. The torpedo-shaped hull, and sail-mounted dive planes suggest the U.S. Navy's Los Angeles class nuclear-powered attack submarine.

At Midnight Snacks, I was approached by a charming young photographer, Megan Baker, who just wanted to break the awkwardness of a bunch of people standing around not talking to each other.  Nice!  She introduced me to her roomate Amelia and the two of them joined Steph and I on our journey to our final destination:  Johalla projects.  By the time we arrived, the evening's events were reaching their end, but we did arrive in time to catch a couple of short films that were being screened as part of the Gadabout Film Festival.  (I saw on the bar the remnants of what might have been snacks, some non-alcoholic beverages, empty beer cans, and a donation jar, but I arrived far too late to give these a fair assessment.)

Johalla Projects - 1561
N Milwaukee Ave. Chicago Zine Fest, work by John Porcellino, Brooks
Golden, Lilli Carré, Anne Elizabeth Moore and more. Reception 7-11pm.

Check out the slide show to see some images from these shows.  And get out there and see some art!  There's no excuse.  You know what's happening thanks to Steph's listings here on Art Talk Chicago, Bad at Sports, and the Chicago Gallery Crawl, and you know how to get there thanks to the Chicago Art Map.  Public transit is easy.  The weather has finally broken.  The wine is flowing and the snacks are, um, doing whatever snacks do.  Your Friday nights are taken care of, free of charge, courtesy of the generosity and hard work of Chicago's artists and galleries.  Now get out there and see some damned art!

Jeriah is an artist,
educator, writer, and snack enthusiast.  You can see his work at, and read his columns at Art Talk Chicago and Chicago
Art Magazine
.  Jeriah lives
and works in Chicago, with his wife

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