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Art Mon Aug 04 2014

Ed Paschke's Art Finds a New Home in His Old Neighborhood

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The work of a Chicago artist who won national and international fame is settled in at a small museum in Jefferson Park, near the neighborhood where he grew up.

Ed Paschke, whose vividly colored and brilliantly grotesque paintings are part of the collections of major American and European museums, grew up the son of Polish immigrant parents on the northwest side of Chicago and lived there much of his life. The new museum dedicated to his work is the Ed Paschke Art Center at 5415 W. Higgins Ave. in Jefferson Park.

The center, which opened in June, exhibits about 40 Paschke works -- mostly paintings (oil on linen), but also prints and colograms (a digital photographic process that results in a 3D-like effect). His Howard Street studio, where he worked from 1980 until his death in 2004, is meticulously recreated. In addition, a 30-minute video runs continuously, showing Paschke working, talking about how he works, and teaching a class of art students at Northwestern University. The video is well done and worth watching for insights into the work and thinking of this creative and articulate artist.

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Paschke's imagery often reflects confrontation, violence, sex and garishly hued scenes from the underbelly of society...the underbelly of diverse Chicago life he liked to observe from his Howard Street studio. Many of his works are portraits of characters like "Accordion Man" or "Four Se," shown here, or "Red Buddha" or "MJ II," a portrait of Michael Jordan's perfect bald head. See the website gallery for more examples of his work. Paschke once said of his art, people "either love it or hate it but rarely are they indifferent to it."

GB-Paschke-accordionman.jpgHis artist father was an influence, and Paschke also said he was influenced by Disney animation and cartoons. He earned a BFA and an MFA at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago, where he became part of a group of artists known as the Chicago Imagists or the Hairy Who. Paschke was known to be a generous educator, mentor and supporter of other artists. He also believed that his art should be easily accessible to the public.

The museum is located in a renovated building with 2,800 square feet of gallery space and 1,700 square feet of educational space. The Rabb Family Foundation is the major funder of the center. The Ed Paschke Foundation, which operates the center, plans an artist-in-residence program. The first events planned are an exhibit of Paul Natkin photography and an exhibit by photographer Steve Schapiro, titled "Andy Warhol, Lou Reed and the Velvet Underground."

Paschke's works are owned by museums such as the Museum of Modern Art, the Whitney Museum of American Art and the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York; The Art Institute of Chicago; the Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden in Washington D.C.; and the Centre George Pompidou and the Louvre Museum in Paris.

The Ed Paschke Art Center at 5415 W. Higgins Ave, Chicago, is open 10am to 7pm daily; admission is free. The center is a short walk from the Jefferson Park Blue Line station. For more information, call 312-533-4911 or visit the website.

Photos courtesy the Ed Paschke Art Center.

 

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Feature Thu Apr 16 2015

From Chicago to Senegal by Way of the Drum: Interview with Local Filmmaker Mallory Sohmer

By Ana Sekler

Mallory Sohmer is a freelance documentary filmmaker from Chicago and a Columbia College alumna. She co-directed the new film, Drum Beat Journey, the story of four inner-city youth who travel to Petit Mbao, Senegal, to participate in a drumming workshop. The program used music as a vehicle to capture and connect with the young men in an engaging and original way. But this is not just a film about drumming; it's about stepping into another culture to learn about oneself.
Read this feature »

Steve at the Movies Fri May 22 2015

Tomorrowland, Slow West, Animals, Good Kill, I'll See You in My Dreams & In the Name of My Daughter

By Steve Prokopy

Read this column »

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Events

Tue May 26 2015
The 2nd Annual 26th Annual Comedy Festival

Tue May 26 2015
The Moth StorySLAM @ Martyrs'

Tue May 26 2015
Kori Newkirk Artist Talk @ Logan Center for the Arts

Tue May 26 2015
Trade Plants for Poems @ The University of Chicago's Logan Center for the Arts

Wed May 27 2015
UHF with Weird Al @ Music Box

Thu May 28 2015
High Fidelity Film Series @ Music Box

Thu May 28 2015
Nick Offerman @ Chicago Humanities Festival

Thu May 28 2015
7 Minutes in Purgatory @ Hideout

Thu May 28 2015
Eat to the Beat: Chicago Academy for the Arts

Fri May 29 2015
Ecos del Pacifico Dance Party @ Old Town School

Fri May 29 2015
Vanessa Bayer @ Thalia Hall

Fri May 29 2015
Danny Floyd & Jeff Prokash "2 Tambours" Opening Reception @ Cornerstone

Fri May 29 2015
Jaime Foster Solo Exhibition "Biophilia" @ Elephant Room Gallery

Fri May 29 2015
Chicago Science Fest

Fri May 29 2015
Millenium Art Festival @ Millenium Park

Sat May 30 2015
The Burden @ Music Box

Sat May 30 2015
National Tap Day celebration @ Old Town School of Folk Music

Sat May 30 2015
Chicago Queer Contra Dance @ St. Paul's

Sat May 30 2015
Ballet Chicago's Illuminate @ Harris Theater

Sat May 30 2015
Obscura Day 2015

Sat May 30 2015
Millenium Art Festival @ Millenium Park

Sat May 30 2015
Chicago Science Fest

Sun May 31 2015
The Lives of Robert Ryan @ Music Box

Sun May 31 2015
Millenium Art Festival @ Millenium Park


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