Tuesday, August 22, 2006

Rearranging the Chess Pieces

Two more galleries are moving around, but remaining part of the West Town Gallery Network (suggestion, call it WTGN, not WGN. Especially since WGN the TV station has claim). West Town is the newest neighborhood for art in Chicago. It mixes the DIY alt sensibilities that make the art scene here so refreshing, with a mind towards business and an eye towards new, fresh or innovative art. It is more of an association (hence "network") than a neighborhood, since the spaces are a little bit spread apart.

Recently Britton Bertran’s 40000 made a move to the West Loop after losing their space to an Italian restaurant of all things. Now 40000 is in the nice position of being in the bustling neighborhood and still maintaining membership in WTGN. Imagine the map of West Town now looking a little like the way Missouri turned out after the famous Missouri Compromise.

This past Friday Lisa Boyle Gallery and Western Exhibitions formally announced in separate emails that both galleries have moved:

"1821 West Hubbard Street, 2nd Floor
(This is 1 block south of Grand, 3 blocks west of Ashland, only a few blocks from the current space. Parking aplenty!)

The galleries shared space at their old location and will continue to do so now. Both spaces are autonomous- it's not as though Lisa has one corner, and Western has the other, of a large room. The galleries' cohabitation has been cited as an advantage rather than not. This makes sense in terms of getting people in the door. Two shows offer more to see, and two openings are more of a draw. Speaking of which, Saturday September 16th, 6-9pm marks the grand gala openings of Boyle and Western in their new digs. Wisely scheduled after the season openers of September 8th. (Art or Idiocy? is working on a fall preview so you know what to go see)

Finally, as we reported before, West Town is expanding and contracting. Booster and Seven is closed, but new recruits are Bill Gross65GRAND and Kat Parker and Katie Rashid’s Duchess.

So what are you waiting for? VISIT WTGN

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