Art Now! Lecture Series

The lecture series brings artists, curators, researchers, and practitioners to Columbia to give students exposure to the rich range of perspectives, practices, and professional pathways possible for the contemporary creative.

Spring 2019 Schedule
All lectures are free and open to the public.


Anika Marie

February 20 at 6 p.m.
Hokin Lecture Hall, 623 S. Wabash, Room 109

Annika Marie is associate professor of art history at Columbia College Chicago. Her areas of research and teaching focus are modern and contemporary art history, theory, and criticism. A former Marie Walsh Sharpe Fine Arts Scholar and former Core Critical Studies Fellow of the Core Program of the Glassell School of the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston, she has engaged the contemporary art world through art criticism and curatorial projects. She has written on Allan Sekula, David Bunn, and Andrea Zittel, among others, for publications such as Art issues and Xtra

Gallerists Monique Meloche and Emanuel Aguilar

Gallerist Round Table: Monique Meloche and Emanuel Aguilar '09

February 27 at 6 p.m.
Hokin Lecture Hall, 623 S. Wabash, Room 109

Emanuel Aguilar '09 is the former director at Kavi Gupta Gallery in Chicago and Berlin, and is founder of PATRON, a contemporary gallery in Chicago. With his co-founder Julia Fischbach, he seeks to "redefine and re-appropriate the traditional values of the contemporary art audience--that of the arts patron." Aguilar will be joined by Monique Meloche, who built a career spotting young talent that others overlooked. She worked with Amy Sherald, who painted First Lady Michelle Obama's official portrait, as well as Columbia alum Rashid Johnson, well before both were well-known. She runs Monique Meloche Gallery in the Wicker Park neighborhood of Chicago.

Work by artist Chloe BassChloë Bass, Obligation To Others Holds Me In My Place (Dalmatian Narrative), 2018

Chloë Bass 

March 20 at 6 p.m.
Hokin Lecture Hall, 623 S. Wabash, Room 109

Chloë Bass is a multiform conceptual artist working in performance, situation, conversation, publication, and installation. Her work uses daily life as a site of deep research to address scales of intimacy: where patterns hold and break as group sizes expand. Her projects have appeared nationally and internationally, including recent exhibits at the Knockdown Center, the Kitchen, the Brooklyn Museum, CUE Art Foundation, Elizabeth Foundation for the Arts Project Space, The Southeastern Center for Contemporary Art, and the James Gallery.

Image from Dawoud Bey's series The Birmingham ProjectDawoud Bey, Mary Parker and Caela Cowan, from “The Birmingham Project,” 2012 

Dawoud Bey

April 11 at 6 p.m.
Ferguson Auditorium, 600 S. Michigan Ave.

This lecture is part of the Museum of Contemporary Photography exhibit Dawoud Bey: The Birmingham Project (open April 11-July 7, 2019) and Columbia's Collective Impact series.

In the exhibition, Dawoud Bey: The Birmingham Project, Bey responds to the September 15, 1963 bombing of the 16th Street Baptist Church in Birmingham, Alabama—an event that resulted in six deaths of black children by white supremacists. In 2012, Bey created large-scale diptychs that commemorate this tragedy and pivotal point in the Civil Rights Movement. These portraits feature a child at the exact age of one killed in 1963 paired with a portrait of an adult at the age the child would be in the year 2013. Alongside Bey’s work will be a selection of prints from both the MoCP permanent collection and the Ryerson Image Centre’s Black Star Collection of photojournalism, providing a historical context for the bombing, and revealing the political and social turmoil that placed the American Civil Rights Movement in the media spotlight during the months leading up to the explosion.

Fo Wilson and Norman Teague

Folayemi Wilson and Norman Teague

April 24 at 6 p.m.
Hokin Lecture Hall, 623 S. Wabash, Room 109

Fo Wilson (Folayemi) is an artist/designer, educator, independent curator, and writer. Her studio practice crosses interdisciplinary boundaries between the visual art, sonic media, a regard for the handmade, a background in design and object making, and an Afrofuturist expression of blackness. Norman Teague is a Chicago-based designer and educator who focuses on projects and pedagogy that address the complexity of urbanism and the culture of communities.

Work by artist Ebony Patterson
Ebony G. Patterson, loving memory...for those who bear/bare witness, 2018. Hand-cut jacquard woven photo tapestry with embellishments, trim, pins, tassels, beads, glitter, appliqués, buttons, brooches, fabric, feathered butterflies and funerary wreath, on artist-designed fabric wallpaper, 127 x 92 in. (322.6 x 233.7 cm). Photo by RCH Photography. Courtesy the artist and Monique Meloche Gallery, Chicago.

Ebony G. Patterson 

May 1 at 6 p.m.
Hokin Lecture Hall, 623 S. Wabash, Room 109

Support for this lecture was provided by Paul Gray ’83 and Dedrea Gray.

Ebony G. Patterson’s new body of large-scale tapestries and hand-cut paper works reflects her recent investigation of gardens—as the artist notes:

“For almost five years, I have been exploring the idea of gardens, both real and imagined, and their relationship to postcolonial spaces. I am interested in how gardens – natural but cultivated settings – operate with social demarcations. I investigate their relationship to beauty, dress, class, race, the body, land, and death. These new works create an immersive installation – a nocturnal garden that acknowledges bodies and sites, that uses pageantry and beauty to create presence in  ‘gardens’ gone awry. We come to pause, to bear witness, and to acknowledge…”

Patterson puts the black body in direct dialogue with the iconography of the garden, from sites of wild, uncultivated nature to artificially domesticated forms of decorative gardens, and, finally, the idea of the garden as an Edenic primordial space existing outside of culture. The artist sees gardens as sites of splendor, danger, and burial, deftly sifting through the iconography to present floral fields as sites for creating both viability and invisibility, for exploring gender, and as signs of self-respect and protection.

These new works – exquisitely and ornately embellished with myriad materials such as glitter, stickers, and varied textiles, among other things – is an unmistakable call to action and testimonial. The titular wordplay – …for those who bear/bare witness… – implicates not only the viewer, who must acknowledge the content of Patterson’s presentation, but also the anonymous victims memorialized by the works, whose bodies are disappeared, or laid bare.


For more information about Art Now! please contact Gina Ordaz