Smart Museum of Art

Smart Museum of Art Admission is always free! The Smart Museum of Art at the University of Chicago is a site for rigorous inquiry and exchange that encourages the examination of complex issues through the lens of art objects and artistic practice.
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Through strong community and scholarly partnerships, the Museum incorporates diverse ideas, identities, and experiences into its exhibitions and collections, academic initiatives, and public programming. The Smart first opened in 1974. Admission is always free. Mission The Smart Museum of Art at the University of Chicago opens the world through art and ideas.

Temporarily closed

From all of us at the Smart Museum of Art, we wish you a bright start to the New Year. During this season of reflection,...
12/31/2020

From all of us at the Smart Museum of Art, we wish you a bright start to the New Year. During this season of reflection, we are so grateful for the support of friends and advocates like you. We look forward to welcoming you back to the Museum in 2021, and hope you will continue to engage with the Smart—and one another—through the exciting array of exhibitions, UChicago academic programs, and new public initiatives planned for the months ahead. Sharing our gratitude and best wishes for the New Year!

Send the Smart into 2021—there are only a few days left to make a gift and show your support for dynamic opportunities t...
12/29/2020
Smart Museum of Art - UChicago Crowdfunding

Send the Smart into 2021—there are only a few days left to make a gift and show your support for dynamic opportunities to connect to art! Your essential support of the Smart Museum of Art helps us to share inspiring exhibitions and programming, while we endeavor to develop new and creative ways of bringing you closer to art and to one another. Give today!

Your support helps us to conceive and share inspiring exhibitions and programming with students, faculty, community members, and others, while we endeavor to develop new and creative ways of bringing you closer to art and to one another. The Smart Museum’s Annual Fund provides essential support th...

Friends and advocates like you have made so much possible this year! The Smart Museum of Art has shared thought-provokin...
12/22/2020

Friends and advocates like you have made so much possible this year! The Smart Museum of Art has shared thought-provoking exhibitions, fostered new ways to connect as a community, advanced scholarly work, found creative inspiration at home, and pursued long-lasting collaborations centered on artistic inquiry, discovery, and exchange.

Make a gift in December and show your support, so we can develop more opportunities to connect with art and one another. Your gift in any amount has an immediate impact on our most significant initiatives. Give today: https://crowdfunding.uchicago.edu/campaigns/smart-museum-of-art

12/19/2020
Family Day: Fancy Flying Feast

Take a roll of paper towels, a set of gouache (or watercolor) paints, a brush, and a ball point pen, and create a fantastical table runner for an upcoming feast!

This project was inspired by Sonja Alhäuser's giant "recipe drawing," which depicts a fantasy world of butter sculptures, crudités and exploded fruits and veggies, and which was included in the Smart Museum's exhibition "Take Care." Paper towels make a lovely surface for watercolor and gouache, so let your imagination run wild! You can paint these paper towel table runners as a family and decorate your table with your new masterpieces at your next fancy dinner.

Materials
-- Paper towel roll
-- Gouache or watercolor paint
-- Paint brush
-- Ball point pen

Artist and museum educator Erik L. Peterson brings the fun and innovative hands-on artmaking of the Smart Museum’s monthly family days into your home in a series of instructional videos. The projects are inspired by the art and artists in the permanent collections of the Smart Museum of Art and, where possible, make use of materials and tools that you might already have around home or in your recycling bin.

It's a fancy flying feast! Grab your art supplies, join Erik L. Peterson, and create a fantastical table runner for an u...
12/17/2020

It's a fancy flying feast! Grab your art supplies, join Erik L. Peterson, and create a fantastical table runner for an upcoming feast.

Our latest at-home activity for families is inspired by Sonja Alhäuser's giant "recipe drawing," which depicts a fantasy world of butter sculptures, crudités and exploded fruits and veggies, and which was included in the Smart Museum's exhibition "Take Care." Tune in to the live stream this Saturday at 1 pm (CST): https://www.facebook.com/smartmuseum/posts/10160646773898782

12/16/2020
Smart Museum of Art

Take a museum tour from home—check out our special playlist of curator-led tours, featuring recent exhibitions 'Claudia Wieser: Generations' and 'Take Care'

Artist Claudia Wieser and co-curator Jennifer Carty lead a virtual tour of "Claudia Wieser: Generations" at the Smart Museum, exploring the roles that space and materials play in the exhibition.

12/16/2020
Family Day: Fancy Flying Feast

Take a roll of paper towels, a set of gouache (or watercolor) paints, a brush, and a ball point pen, and create a fantastical table runner for an upcoming feast!

This project was inspired by Sonja Alhäuser's giant "recipe drawing," which depicts a fantasy world of butter sculptures, crudités and exploded fruits and veggies, and which was included in the Smart Museum's exhibition "Take Care." Paper towels make a lovely surface for watercolor and gouache, so let your imagination run wild! You can paint these paper towel table runners as a family and decorate your table with your new masterpieces at your next fancy dinner.

Materials
-- Paper towel roll
-- Gouache or watercolor paint
-- Paint brush
-- Ball point pen

Artist and museum educator Erik L. Peterson brings the fun and innovative hands-on artmaking of the Smart Museum’s monthly family days into your home in a series of instructional videos. The projects are inspired by the art and artists in the permanent collections of the Smart Museum of Art and, where possible, make use of materials and tools that you might already have around home or in your recycling bin.

Relax and create together during a guided art-making session and discussion about what it means to "take care" and how w...
12/14/2020
Take Care with Art After Dark: Creating Collages

Relax and create together during a guided art-making session and discussion about what it means to "take care" and how we care for ourselves and others.

Join Rita Alvarez, Lead Museum Educator, for a virtual program that mixes art-making and conversation, inspired by Suellen Rocca’s painting "Cha Cha Couple." Using a piece of paper, cardboard from our numerous at home deliveries or from a pizza box, participants will draw/color/create/glue/tape a collage of their own.

Happening Wednesday at 6 pm. Please register for the link:

Join the Smart Museum for an art-making session and discussion about what it means to "take care" and how we care for ourselves and others.

"Having an unexpectedly historic year as the backdrop to a critical milestone left us with many feelings to explore and ...
12/11/2020
Beyond Pomp & Circumstance to the Problems of our Time | Smart Museum of Art

"Having an unexpectedly historic year as the backdrop to a critical milestone left us with many feelings to explore and questions to ponder. How has this year affected me, my friends, and the world at large? What comes next?"

—Brooklyn Jamerson-Flowers, former Smart Museum Educator and Metcalf Intern for Public Practice, developed a special project that gathered creative responses to the moment from members of the University of Chicago class of 2020. Explore all 11 projects—poems, songs, videos, and more—in "Beyond Pomp & Circumstance to the Problems of our Time" on our website.

Though graduation came without the expected pomp and circumstance, this year gave the Class of 2020 plenty to think about.

12/08/2020
Claudia Wieser: Generations

Artist Claudia Wieser and co-curator Jennifer Carty lead a virtual tour of "Claudia Wieser: Generations" at the Smart Museum, exploring the roles that space and materials play in the exhibition.

New from UChicago Arts—Claudia Wieser's theatre of the abstract, mystical, and optical. Explore the site-specific exhibi...
12/03/2020

New from UChicago Arts—Claudia Wieser's theatre of the abstract, mystical, and optical. Explore the site-specific exhibition with UChicago College 4th year Jad Dahshan:

"Quietly, an ancient chorus of cascading forms, conic figures, and gleaming orbs unfolds at the Smart Museum. The shadowy impressions of the natural world tease and vanish; gargantuan ghosts stare silently, knowingly. Vision spills through the galleries like light, stirring landscapes, birthing echoes, chasing epiphanies."

4th Year student Jad Dahshan explores The Smart Museum of Art's exhibition "Claudia Wieser: Generations," for our blog: http://ms.spr.ly/6182pOkjC

Giving Tuesday is here! Support the Smart Museum's mission to bring people closer to art and each other. Make a gift tod...
12/01/2020
Smart Museum of Art Annual Fund - UChicago Crowdfunding

Giving Tuesday is here! Support the Smart Museum's mission to bring people closer to art and each other. Make a gift today:

Your support helps us to conceive and share inspiring exhibitions and programming with students, faculty, community members, and others, while we endeavor to develop new and creative ways of bringing you closer to art and to one another. The Smart Museum’s Annual Fund provides essential support th...

Giving Tuesday is coming up soon! Mark your calendar—on December 1, you can help the Smart Museum share inspirational ex...
11/27/2020
Smart Museum of Art Annual Fund - UChicago Crowdfunding

Giving Tuesday is coming up soon! Mark your calendar—on December 1, you can help the Smart Museum share inspirational exhibitions and programming by making a gift.

Your support helps us to conceive and share inspiring exhibitions and programming with students, faculty, community members, and others, while we endeavor to develop new and creative ways of bringing you closer to art and to one another. The Smart Museum’s Annual Fund provides essential support th...

On this Thanksgiving, we're especially grateful for all those who do the essential, seen and unseen, labor of caregiving...
11/26/2020

On this Thanksgiving, we're especially grateful for all those who do the essential, seen and unseen, labor of caregiving that sustains us all. Thank you and #takecare!

11/25/2020
Porcelain Paper Plates

Take a common paper plate and make it fit for a Thanksgiving feast!

Join the Smart Museum of Art for a virtual family day inspired by our special exhibition 'Take Care.' We will use blue markers and pens to draw beautiful designs and pastoral scenes on humble disposable paper plates, making them appear like the fine china found in photographs by Laura Letinsky.

Materials
-- Paper plates (wax free... the thinnest, cheapest plates work best!)
-- Blue markers, pens, or colored pencils

Artist and museum educator Erik L. Peterson brings the fun and innovative hands-on artmaking of the Smart Museum’s monthly family days into your home in a series of instructional videos. The projects are inspired by the art and artists in the permanent collections of the Smart Museum of Art and, where possible, make use of materials and tools that you might already have around home or in your recycling bin.

Looking for more activities to do at home? Browse our virtual family day archive: https://vimeo.com/showcase/6978609

11/24/2020
Smart Museum of Art

Join in from home and make art together as a family during Thanksgiving break!

Take a common paper plate and make it fit for a Thanksgiving feast!

Join the Smart Museum of Art for a virtual family day inspired by our special exhibition 'Take Care.' We will use blue markers and pens to draw beautiful designs and pastoral scenes on humble disposable paper plates, making them appear like the fine china found in photographs by Laura Letinsky.

Materials
-- Paper plates (wax free... the thinnest, cheapest plates work best!)
-- Blue markers, pens, or colored pencils

Artist and museum educator Erik L. Peterson brings the fun and innovative hands-on artmaking of the Smart Museum’s monthly family days into your home in a series of instructional videos. The projects are inspired by the art and artists in the permanent collections of the Smart Museum of Art and, where possible, make use of materials and tools that you might already have around home or in your recycling bin.

Looking for more activities to do at home? Browse our virtual family day archive: https://vimeo.com/showcase/6978609

11/20/2020
Porcelain Paper Plates

Take a common paper plate and make it fit for a Thanksgiving feast!

Join the Smart Museum of Art for a virtual family day inspired by our special exhibition 'Take Care.' We will use blue markers and pens to draw beautiful designs and pastoral scenes on humble disposable paper plates, making them appear like the fine china found in photographs by Laura Letinsky.

Materials
-- Paper plates (wax free... the thinnest, cheapest plates work best!)
-- Blue markers, pens, or colored pencils

Artist and museum educator Erik L. Peterson brings the fun and innovative hands-on artmaking of the Smart Museum’s monthly family days into your home in a series of instructional videos. The projects are inspired by the art and artists in the permanent collections of the Smart Museum of Art and, where possible, make use of materials and tools that you might already have around home or in your recycling bin.

Looking for more activities to do at home? Browse our virtual family day archive: https://vimeo.com/showcase/6978609

The principles of Bauhaus craftsmanship inform Claudia Wieser's art objects and immersive spatial installations. Learn a...
11/17/2020

The principles of Bauhaus craftsmanship inform Claudia Wieser's art objects and immersive spatial installations. Learn about these and other influences during an EXPO CHICAGO live-stream discussion presented in conjunction with our special exhibition 'Claudia Wieser: Generations.'

Featuring the artist and curators Jennifer Carty and Rachel Adams, and moderated by scholar Christine Mehring. Join in the discussion on November 19 at noon (CST) at https://program.expochicago.com/claudia-wieser/

Image: 'Claudia Wieser: Generations,' installation view at the Smart Museum of Art, 2020. Photo by Eat Pomegranate Photography. Art courtesy the artist and Marianne Boesky Gallery.

11/14/2020
Smart Museum of Art

COVID update: in support of the City of Chicago's stay-at-home advisory and the expanded precautions the University of Chicago is taking in response to the pandemic, the Smart Museum of Art will temporarily close to the public beginning today, November 14. No re-opening date has been set at this time.

We encourage you to continue to explore with us online, by joining an upcoming virtual program or taking a virtual tour:

What does it mean to care for something, for someone, or for ourselves?

Our current exhibition ‘Take Care’ mines the Smart Museum’s collection to explore questions of care. Take a virtual visit to the galleries as exhibition co-curators Jennifer Carty and Berit Ness unpack the complexities and nuances of care.

Learn more and visit: https://smartmuseum.uchicago.edu/take-care

Toward Common Cause
11/10/2020
Toward Common Cause

Toward Common Cause

Welcome to Toward Common Cause, a multi-site exhibition marking the 40th anniversary of the MacArthur Foundation Fellows Program. Organized by the Smart Museum of Art with partners across Chicago, it features work by 28 MacArthur Fellows:

Njideka Akunyili Crosby, Ida Applebroog, Dawoud Bey, Mark Bradford, Mel Chin, Nicole Eisenman, Wendy Ewald , LaToya Ruby Frazier, Jeffrey Gibson, Guillermo Gómez-Peña, Gary Hill, David Hammons, Alfredo Jaar, Toba Khedoori, An-My Lê, Whitfield Lovell, Rick Lowe, Iñigo Manglano-Ovalle, Kerry James Marshall, Julie Mehretu, Amalia Mesa-Bains, Trevor Paglen, Fazal Sheikh, Shahzia Sikander, Kara Walker, Carrie Mae Weems, Fred Wilson, and Xu Bing.

Opening summer 2021. Learn more: https://towardcommoncause.org

🎉 We’re excited to launch Toward Common Cause today! This expansive multi-site exhibition is organized by the Smart Muse...
11/10/2020
Home | Toward Common Cause

🎉 We’re excited to launch Toward Common Cause today! This expansive multi-site exhibition is organized by the Smart Museum in collaboration with more than two dozen exhibition, programmatic, and research partner across Chicago. 'Toward Common Cause' celebrates 40th anniversary of the MacArthur Foundation Fellows Program and features work by 28 MacArthur Fellows.

Opening summer 2021. Learn more and find the list of participants and partners at https://TowardCommonCause.org

Presented in conjunction with the 40th anniversary of the MacArthur Fellows Program, this multi-site exhibition uses the idea of “the commons” to explore the current socio-political moment, in which questions of inclusion, exclusion, ownership, and rights of access are constantly being challenge...

“The traumatic aftermath of this worldwide pandemic—devastating losses of life and livelihood caused by a tiny virus tha...
11/06/2020

“The traumatic aftermath of this worldwide pandemic—devastating losses of life and livelihood caused by a tiny virus that has outstripped scientific knowledge, first-world wealth, and human resolve—will not finally be assuaged at November’s ballot box. At their root, this year’s electoral machinations belie a critical loss of faith: not just in these candidates or this process, but in ourselves. Human beings suffer not only when there is insufficient care on offer, but when we cannot offer such care ourselves.”

Cynthia G. Lindner, Director of Ministry Studies and Clinical Faculty for Preaching and Pastoral Care at the University of Chicago Divinity School, writes in Sightings: Religion in Public Life on the precariousness of care and her new selection for the 'Collective Care' section of Take Care.

Read the essay: https://divinity.uchicago.edu/sightings/articles/precariousness-care

Image: Fischli & Weiss, Untitled (Editions for The Renaissance Society: Photography Portfolio), 1986, Digital print on archival paper. Smart Museum of Art, The University of Chicago, Gift of a Private Donor, 2017.140.1.

Address

5550 S Greenwood Ave
Chicago, IL
60637

Take the Red or Green Line to Garfield Boulevard. Exit and transfer to the eastbound #55 Garfield bus. Exit the bus at Ellis Avenue and walk half a block south on Ellis. The Smart is on the left, set back from the street in the center of the block. or Take the #6 Jackson Park Express bus to 55th Street. Transfer to the westbound #55 Garfield bus. Exit bus at Ellis Avenue, cross to the south side of 55th Street, and continue south on Ellis for half a block. The Smart is on the left, set back from the street in the center of the block. Other bus routes, like the #2 Hyde Park Express and #4 Cottage Grove also have stops within walking distance.

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(773) 702-0200

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The Smart Museum of Art at the University of Chicago is a site for rigorous inquiry and exchange that encourages the examination of complex issues through the lens of art objects and artistic practice. Through strong community and scholarly partnerships, the Museum incorporates diverse ideas, identities, and experiences into its exhibitions and collections, academic initiatives, and public programming. The Smart first opened in 1974. Admission is always free. Mission The Smart Museum of Art at the University of Chicago opens the world through art and ideas.


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