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November 19 to December 31, 2010

In Gallery 1

DEB SOKOLOW | images
press: | ArtSlant (Best of 2010) | ArtSlant (review) | New City | Flavorpill | Huffington Post
Western Exhibitions is pleased to present a solo exhibition by DEB SOKOLOW in Gallery 1 and a group show in Gallery 2, "The Power of Selection, Part 3", curated by Ryan Travis Christian, that runs from November 19 to December 31, 2010. Both shows opens on Friday, November 19 with a reception, from 5 to 8pm, which is free and open to the public.


You'll fly into Denver International Airport in the early morning hours,
taking care to book a window seat.
Prior to landing, you'll make an attempt
to locate the pyramid-like structure southeast
of the long-term parking lot. If it's not visible
from the air, you will need to rent a car when you land and drive to the corner of ___ and ___ to take a closer look at the structure that is supposedly being built there by those working for the New World Order.
Six hours should be long enough to really get a good look at everything on your list inside the airport and outside within its extensive grounds before you fly back home. (SEE LIST OF ITEMS THAT WILL NEED TO BE EXAMINED CLOSELY.)

If the theory about Denver International Airport is true, they will be employing numerous strategies to hide everything from the general public, so staying under the radar is going to be important. Of course, under no circumstance should you alert them to the fact that you, for them, are a problematic individual.

In a departure from a studio practice that up until now has focused on large-scale, installation-oriented drawings, Sokolow is switching gears to embark on a new, long-term project of writing dozens of chapters, in no particular order, for a book that will never fully exist. Each chapter is drafted by hand on a single 30 x 22 page of paper, edited, erased, rewritten a number of times, and finally mounted onto a tablet-like panel. Each page, when finished, represents an entire visual record of the process that takes place when writing each chapter.
The contents of these chapters include both serious and ridiculous investigations into politics and conspiracy theories as well as thoughts on architecture, wig-wearing, and salami sandwiches. These topics will seem somewhat unrelated, but there are two common existing threads: the implication of an overarching narrative (which will begin to take a clearer shape as additional chapters are written over the next few years) and Sokolow's voice, an unreliable alter-ego protagonist, who authors each chapter and provides (in true meta-fiction fashion) a running commentary, often of a self-critical and premonition-like nature, located between the lines of text and margins of each page. Long-term, Sokolow will continue to write chapters and present them, always out of order, in different combinations, so that when mixed and matched, a different "mood" will form from the juxtaposition of the exhibited chapters. Sokolow's stories are inspired from watching of epic-like television dramas such as Battlestar Galactica and Deadwood, and from a recent immersion into books such as Muriel Spark's The Comforters, Thomas Pynchon's The Crying of Lot 49, Iain Banks The Wasp Factory and Umberto Eco's Foucault's Pendulum, all of which incorporate elements of meta-fiction, the unreliable narrator and paranoia into the story-telling process.
The first few chapters from Sokolow's book as well as their visuals and sources (such as footnotes, images, architectural renderings, charts and book-like objects) will be presented in this solo show at Western Exhibitions.
This is Deb Sokolow's first show with the gallery and her first solo exhibition at a commercial gallery in Chicago since her show, "Secrets and Lies and More Lies" at 40000 in 2006. Her recent projects include large-scale, site-specific drawings for the Van Abbemuseum in the Netherlands, the Smart Museum at the University of Chicago, the Spertus Museum, the Museum of Contemporary Art in Chicago, INOVA [Institute of Visual Arts] in Milwaukee, a solo show at the Kemper Museum in Kansas City and a comic strip commissioned for Creative Time. Sokolow's work will be included in upcoming group shows at the Scottsdale Museum of Contemporary Art and the Arlington Arts Center and in a solo exhibition at Lawrence University. Sokolow's work is in the permanent collections of the Museum of Contemporary Art, Chicago and the Spertus Museum and has been discussed in, Art in America (online), Artnet, Art Papers, Art on Paper, Artslant, Beautiful Decay, Dagens Nyheter, The Kansas City Star, The Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, The Chicago Tribune, Chicago Sun-Times, Chicago Magazine, New City, Timeout Chicago, Flavorpill and Jettison Quarterly. She is a 2010 resident of the Art Omi International Artists Residency and received her MFA from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago in 2004. She lives and works in Chicago.

Gallery 2:

curated by Ryan Travis Christian

The Power of Selection Part 3 is the third in a series of three shows curated by Ryan Travis Christian for Western Exhibitions. Christian, who writes for, Beautiful Decay and selects an Artist of the Day, each and every day on his Facebook page, has organized these shows, the first in January, the second in June and the third here in November, to increase the circulation of contemporary artwork seen in Chicago by showing works from out of town and/or up-and-coming artists.

Artists in this salon-style blow-out include Michelle Blade, Louisa Chase, Chris Duncan, Joseph Hart, Maya Hayuk, Matt Irie, Jason Jagel, Michael Kreuger, Matt Lock, Alex Lukas, Bill McRight, Frankie Martin, Eddie Martinez, Kristine Moran, Erin Morrison, Sarah Mosk, Jeanette Mundt, Aaron Noble, Marcie Oakes, Maggie Otero, Mathew Palladino, Hilary Pecis, Cleon Peterson, Brion Nuda Rosch, Kate Ruggeri, Jovi Schnell, Andrew Schoultz, Eric Shaw, Marissa Textor, Ann Toebbe, Sumi Ink Club, Chuck Webster, Ryan Wallace. (This is a partial list).