Installation view of Hales at EXPO Chicago, Booth 229, 13 - 16 April. Photo by Sylvia Ros.
For the 2023 edition of EXPO Chicago, Hales is pleased to present a selection of works by artists who reflect the programming and vision of the gallery: Jordan Ann Craig, Rotimi Fani-Kayode, Virginia Jaramillo, Tuli Mekondjo, LJ Roberts and Kay WalkingStick. The presentation features a collection of historic and new works made especially for this fair.
Jordan Ann Craig (b. 1992 San Jose, CA, USA) received her BA in Studio Art and Psychology from Dartmouth College in 2015. She lives and works in Santa Fe, New Mexico. Known for her large-scale paintings and prints, Craig's abstract compositions are characterized by a dynamic exploration and interpretation of Northern Cheyenne material culture. Incorporating vivid colors, recurring patterns, and interwoven forms situated in grids, Craig's work explores and celebrates her Native ancestry, posing questions about the languages of modern abstract painting and the relationship to both historic and contemporary indigenous culture. In 2020, Craig's first solo museum exhibition, Your Favorite Color is Yellow, was held at Roswell Museum of Art, NM, USA. Jordan Ann Craig's debut solo show with the gallery opens later this year at Hales New York.
Rotimi Fani-Kayode was born in 1955, in Lagos, Nigeria to a prominent Yoruba family before moving to England following the outbreak of civil war. He later studied at Georgetown University and the Pratt Institute in the USA, before settling permanently in London in 1983 where he lived and worked until his untimely death in 1989. Fani-Kayode is a highly influential figure in the history of art who, despite a tragically brief career, produced a complex body of photographic work that explored themes of race, sexuality, spirituality, and the self. At the core of Fani-Kayode's art was an emphasis on difference and otherness. His work is featured in many public collections including Tate, London, UK; Guggenheim Museum NY, USA, Museum of Fine Art, Houston, TX, USA, and most recently The Hood Museum, NH, USA.
Virginia Jaramillo (b. 1939, El Paso, Texas) studied at Otis Art Institute, Los Angeles, from 1958-61. Jaramillo lives and works in New York. Born in El Paso, Texas, Jaramillo spent her formative years in California before moving to Europe and settling in New York City in late 1960s. Central to a career spanning nearly six decades is Jaramillo's drive to express materially our sensory perceptions of space and time in what she describes as 'an aesthetic investigation which seeks to translate into visual terms the mental structural patterns we all superimpose on our world.' Whether creating bold abstract paintings, sculptural mixed media compositions or meticulously formed handmade paper works, Jaramillo has forged a unique voice, experimenting with material and process to pursue her ongoing explorations of human perception of reality. Jaramillo's first museum retrospective Virginia Jaramillo: Principle of Equivalence is upcoming at the Kemper Museum of Contemporary Art, MO, opening in June 2023.
Tuli Mekondjo (b.1982 Angola) is a Namibian artist, whose richly multifaceted practice considers the sociohistorical context of Namibia as a site to re-evaluate and consider ideas around ancestry and identity. Mekondjo lives and works in Windhoek, Namibia. Known for her mixed media and embroidered paintings, Mekondjo's rigorous practice is a pursuit to connect with and honor her heritage. Her practice navigates feelings of displacement, having spent her childhood in refugee camps. Sensitive explorations of history and ancestry allow Mekondjo to address, question, and heal parts of this past, deftly weaving personal and collective trauma with beauty, nature and optimism. Mekondjo is a finalist for The Norval Sovereign African Art Prize 2023.
LJ Roberts (b.1980 Michigan, USA) received a BA in English and Studio Art from the University of Vermont, VT in 2003 and an MA in Visual and Critical Studies, as well as an MFA in Textiles from the California College of the Arts, CA in 2007. They live and work in Brooklyn, NY. Their practice investigates overlaps of queer and trans politics, activism, protest, narrative, and craft. Roberts makes intimate embroideries, as well as large-scale textile installations, artist books, and collages. In Roberts's intricate embroidered portraits, they create a beautiful tribute to each subject and the artist's relationship with them. Each piece is stitched by hand, labor-intensive and takes months, even years to complete. In 2021, their first solo exhibition in New York City, Carry You With Me: Ten Years of Portraits opened at Pioneer Works and then showed at the Iris & B. Gerald Cantor Center for Visual Arts at Stanford University. Roberts's work has been shown in many institutions including The Victoria and Albert Museum, UK; The Brooklyn Museum, NY; The 8th Floor, NY; Museum of Arts and Design, NY; The Powerhouse Museum, Australia; The Oakland Museum of California, CA; and the Smithsonian Museum of American Art, Washington D.C. where their work is in the permanent collection.
Kay WalkingStick (b. 1935 Syracuse, NY) is a citizen of the Cherokee Nation of Oklahoma, she has Cherokee/Anglo heritage. She received a BFA from Beaver College (now Arcadia University) Glenside, PA in 1959 and an MFA from the Pratt Institute, Brooklyn, NY in 1975. She lives and works in Pennsylvania. Over a career spanning six decades, WalkingStick's practice has focused on the American Landscape and its metaphorical significances to Native Americans and people across the world. WalkingStick draws on formal modernist painterly traditions as well as the Native American experience to create works that connect the immediacy of the physical world with the spiritual. The Museum of Modern Art, NY, Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art, AR and The New York Historical Society, NY have recently acquired works by WalkingStick.