Friday, December 19, 2008

the first 2009 art opening

Sebastian Alvarez

Project Wall Space: Huong Ngo
Monthly Video series: Patrick Holbrook

Opening Friday January 9, 2009 from 6pm-10pm

January 9 - February 7, 2009

"Words feel beneath" by Sebastian Alvarez is a piece that exists in different forms, as an image, as an installation, and as a performance. This work reflects about the human relation with the earth, the disappearance of the language of storytelling, and the environments to which we depend in order to create culture. What has ultimate value, is not what is measured and seen but what exists in the many realms of meanings and connections that lie beneath the tangible realities of the world, linking all things.

Sebastian Alvarez, born in Lima, Peru, is an interdisciplinary performance artist, who is interested in transforming his personal vision into social responsibility with new cultural imperatives that include a renewed sense of community, an ecological reintegration, and greater access to the mythic and archetypal bases of bio-restoration.

Also this month
Project Wall Space: Huong Ngo

"Though I grew up in the verdant piedmont area of North Carolina, one of my earliest memories is closely inspecting the minute grid of a window screen and imagining the endless horizon of high-rise buildings in my birthplace, Hong Kong. Mine was one of only a handful of Vietnamese families in this area which Nascar racers and elementary school teachers alike fondly call "The New South." As a child, I devoted all of my creative energies towards making wearable gifts for loved ones, which they typically used once and then politely hid away. By middle school, I had already raised a brood of baby hamsters, started a small business, and learned to sew with a machine. With these achievements under my belt, I began reading only psychology textbooks, absurdist plays, and science journals in my attempt to understand the world.

My art investigates the tenuous nature of survival. Born as a refugee, my experiences are shaped by a sense of statelessness, flux, and displacement. I explore these themes to their utopian and dystopian ends through the creation of shelter, both physical and psychological. I appropriate futurist aesthetics to reposition the story of the refugee as contemporaneous with mythologies of the modern nomad. I combine the language of design and craft movements with the use of recycled industrial materials in order to challenge traditional notions of technological progress and question dominant modes of consumption and production. At the same time, I use strategies of collaboration, humor, and play, to allow for new economies of personal exchange and broach darker aspects of humanity such as war, fear, and isolation.

I received my MFA from The School of the Art Institute in Chicago, and my BFA from the University of North Carolina. I have exhibited my works at the Museum of Contemporary Art in Chicago, the National Gallery in Prague, the Yerba Buena Art Center in San Francisco, the Neuberger Museum at SUNY Purchase, the Anahuacalli Museum in Mexico City, as well as numerous non-profit and artist-run spaces. I have received the LMCC Swing Space Grant, the Chashama artist studio, and the Community Arts Assistance Program Grant from the City of Chicago Department of Cultural Affairs."

Monthly Video series: Patrick Holbrook

Patrick Holbrook lives and works in Chicago. His work examines the spaces and movements of commodities and people, the intersections of power structures, ideological expression in engineered and cultural forms, cultural memory, and speculative possibilities of alternative ways of living. Based in video and digital media, but including other materials and objects, it has been shown at venues such as the Atlanta Contemporary Art Center and the Yerba Buena Center for the Arts in San Francisco, and in solo exhibitions at Eyedrum and the Saltworks Gallery Project Room in Atlanta, A\V Space in Rochester NY, and Washington State University Tri-Cities. He is an Adjunct Professor at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago and Columbia College, has been a visiting artist at Rhode Island School of Design, Scripps College, and The University of Memphis, and was an Assistant Professor at the Georgia College & State University Art Department from 2002 to 2007, where he started the digital media area. He grew up in New Hampshire and received an M.F.A. from the University of Massachusetts - Amherst, a B.A. from Hampshire College, and plays music with The Wood Knots.

1765 S. Laflin St.
Chicago IL 60608
antenapilsen (at)
Saturdays noon-5pm or by appointment

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

antena @ bridge art fair in miami

Antena @ Bridge Art Fair Miami Beach
December 4-7, 2008

Following its enormous critical and commercial successes in 2006 and 2007, Bridge is pleased to announce our third installment in Miami Beach. Held at both the Catalina and Maxine Hotels, Bridge Miami leads the South Beach satellite art market, located a mere two blocks from Art Basel. Visitors can browse nearly 80 rooms of the freshest and most innovative works in international emerging and contemporary art.

Arguably the largest convergence of contemporary art and design takes place during Art Basel Miami in this annual, star-studded, citywide celebration of new art internationalism. Consistently a muscular destination market, Miami shows absolutely no signs of stopping, and continues to astound as far and beyond the top-performing art-fair circuit in the United States.

The Catalina and Maxine Hotels
1732 Collins Avenue
Miami, Florida


Room #201

Artists exhibiting with Antena:
Edra Soto
Gisela Insuaste
Gretel Garcia
Huong Ngo
Jaime Mendoza
Jesus Oviedo
Miguel Cortez
Saul Aguirre

See full schedule HERE

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Time Lapse: a video art group show

Time Lapse:
a video art group show curated by Amelia Winger-Bearskin

Works by:
Bidzina Kanchaveli
Joseph Winchester
Leanneau White
Arthur Augustynowicz
Robert Milton

and more...

Opening Friday November 21, 2008
from 6pm-10pm
November 21 - December 20

Time Lapse is last in a series of four exhibitions: Time Travelers, Time Machine, Time Lapse, and Time Lapse: Antena, curated by Amelia Winger-Bearskin. Time Travelers, was shown at Polvo in Chicago, 2007; Time Machine in Washington DC at Meat Market Gallery this past summer; Time Lapse in Nashville, Tn at Vanderbilt University and Time Lapse: Antenna will be shown in the same Chicago space where the project began bringing us back in time to the beginning.

Time Lapse is single channel video art show; all videos are displayed through a single projector one after another in the style of film screenings and time-lapse photography. Time unfolds and is captured systematically by an optical lens and/or digital media, the subjects of the videos are often overlapping, there is not an intimate knowing but a careful study of sequence, there are also holes, lapses and mistakes, there are doubts in the work.

And while it may appear obvious to time travelers that there need only be ONE time based art show for travelers to coordinate their time machines to that exact date and place, no time traveling devices were detected at the first show and the subsequent efforts have been made to make sure there is progress in this time space continuum while leaving open the idea that once this information is recorded it will likely be changed by the time travelers, machines and lapses who frequent these events from a future and past date in "time".

Amelia Winger-Bearskin is a Video/Performance Artists who is currently teaching at Vanderbilt University, Nashville Tn in the areas of Video, Performance and Drawing. She is a featured artists for the Perpetual Art Machine [PAM] and is currently creating solo video and installation works about Andrew Jackson and his home in Nashville Tn. She is also currently working on a new series of video art curations in the near future.

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Patrick Lichty's opening

Thursday, September 11, 2008

Antena featured in the Chicago Reader

Best Bets | Antena

In 1996 Miguel Cortez cofounded Polvo, a Pilsen collective whose ventures included print and online magazines and one of the city’s best independent galleries. Polvo closed the gallery in 2007, but Cortez’s new space, Antena, is keeping up the same high standards of diverse and thought-provoking work. October brings a solo show by Patrick Lichty, whose CV includes work with anticorporate pranksters RTMark. Lichty’s Spire Reloaded comprises various electronic depictions of Berwyn’s late, beloved “car-kebab,” from straight-up photos to an online “virtual sculpture” and a ten-minute expansion of the 12-second appearance of the spire in Wayne’s World.

That’s followed in November by Time Elapse, curated by Amelia Winger-Bearskin, who’ll present her own video art as well as that of a selection of artists largely from Austin, Texas. A trained opera singer, Winger-Bearskin takes a meditative approach to everyday experiences, creating mesmerizing work that combines the layered harmonics of mantra-like vocals with blurry, manipulated imagery of landscapes and bodies. A continuation of a project begun last year at Polvo, Time Elapse will also feature work by Joseph Winchester—whose elegant abstractions evoke the history of experimental film, video, and sound art—and Lanneau White, whose lo-fi battledork aesthetic evokes the west coast performance troupe, My Barbarian, and the Dungeon Majesty fantasy serial, but adds depth by addressing issues of race and otherness. Antena is just one facet of the bustling Pilsen art world; Plaines Project, Vega Estates, No Coast, and Golden Age are all worth visiting in the coming months too. Arrow Spire Reloaded opens Fri 10/10, 5 PM, and runs through 11/8. Time Elapse opens Fri 11/21, 6 PM, and runs through 12/20. Sat noon-5 or by appointment, 1765 S. Laflin, —Albert Stabler

Wednesday, September 3, 2008

Jaime Mendoza opening night - August 29, 2008

article in NEW CITY

Fall Openings: Art Not Necessarily for Sale

Many new and established art galleries function as gallery spaces and homes. Outside the clusters of galleries, these spaces, such as Pilsen’s Antena, Oak Park’s Suburban and Albany Park’s Swimming Pool Project Space make room for art beside the furniture. Profit is not the motive; rather, it’s all about exposure, for artists and viewers, and creative expression. “We have an art world that doesn’t value artists,” notes Michelle Grabner, co-owner of the nine-year-old Suburban gallery. “Dealers and curators are running the shots, artists really don’t have the kind of control and decision making they once had.”

Filling that void, art spaces such as Suburban and Antena allow artists free reign in terms of artistic and curatorial control. Antena, a new space that opened in March, is run out of founder Miguel Cortez’s apartment. “Artists are allowed to repaint the walls, transform the space for a show,” Cortez says, who shifted focus to his new space after running Pilsen’s Polvo gallery for years. Polvo continues to publish a quarterly magazine with artist profiles.

Art openings at both Suburban and Antena provide a gathering spot for the arts community. At Suburban, openings now take place on Sunday afternoons in the yard of Grabner’s house, with bratwurst and beer during the warm months, coffee and sweets during the winter. Antena’s openings, which take place in Cortez’s apartment, are equally informal. And through these events artists gain access to networks and visibility.

“We are neither a commercial nor a non-profit space,” notes Grabner. And the same goes for Antena, which aims to be a forum for artists in need of a middle ground alternative space.

Swimming Pool Project Space, opened July 2008, appearing as a commercial storefront, provides a springboard for emerging contemporary artists from Chicago and abroad. Pool parties—openings that take place around the glossy blue wooden floor that resembles a swimming pool—provide a place for artists and community members to interact. “This where people meet, artists or not, it’s public space where conversation occurs, not a bar but an art space,” says co-owner Liz Nielsen. The next exhibition, “Video as Video: Rewind to Form,” is curated by art critic Alicia Eler and artist Peregrine Honig, and opens September 20. (Marla Seidell)

Thursday, August 7, 2008

Tania Kupczak review from Timeout Chicago

Tania Kupczak

Tania Kupczak, 3 losses (still), 2008.

A young woman in a heavy coat trudges through snow-covered fields. It’s unclear how much fun this is for her, but on a hot Chicago summer day, Seattle-based artist Tania Kupczak’s encounter with the deep snows of Vermont—the subject of her video 3 losses (2008)—is a refreshing reminder we won’t always feel as though we’re moving through a soup of grime and humidity.

In the video, the artist’s ambiguous voiceovers allude to romantic troubles without specifying what has happened or who was involved. The second of its three sections, which begins with a tearful Kupczak lying in the snow and ends with her calmly continuing her journey, clearly suggests a connection between her stormy external and internal conditions. But this isn’t a cheesy chick flick: Kupczak cleverly incorporates the weather into the monologues she delivers to unseen listeners, explaining that one relationship featured “a flurry of touches, but no accumulation.”

In her mixed-media installation snow_leylines (2003), Kupczak plays a recording of herself walking the same path through the snow at different times. As we hear every crunch and crackle of her steps when the temperature is low and then watery, sliding sounds as it rises into the 40s, the artist’s catalog of her everyday movements—she recites the temperature and other details (“full moon”)—leaves us in a meditative state. Kupczak’s meteorology-inspired abstract “system maps” (pale networks of symbols such as clouds and raindrops) are less compelling than her video and audio work, in which she reveals the beauty of our mundane struggles with winter.

Friday, June 6, 2008

Saturday, May 17, 2008

review in Chicago Weekly newspaper

What Makes a Man Start Fires?: A new exhibit at the antena gallery mediates the relationship between the viewer and the world

By Emma Ellis

You haven’t felt the meaning of stimulus overload until you’ve felt it in the hands of artist Noelle Mason. Immediately upon walking into the one-room antena gallery, a barrage of slaps, gasps, and giggles welcomes the newcomer. You progress through the physically interactive show, weaving across cables, tiptoeing over broken bits of a chandelier that lies crashed in the center of the gallery’s floor, and bending over to view certain pieces properly. While standing near the two walls where about half the pieces are located, you can’t even step backwards without bumping into “Li’l Sparky”—an electric chair.

Using an intrusive shock therapy-type method, Noelle Mason created the show “What makes a man start fires” with the intention of getting people “to act, to really metaphorically start this fire—to cause change towards something that is better for us as a society.” Much of her work in the show serves to demonstrate how inured the audience is to what she calls “mediating objects,” and force viewers’ participation in ideas from which their culture tends to distance itself.
In “Bob and Weave,” for example, the audience witnesses a video of a fistfight between Mason and a large man projected onto a wall. As the tussle progresses, Mason’s bloodied face bumps in and out of the camera’s frame, the back of her opponent’s head impeding our view most of the time. The viewer is confronted with an image physically too large and too loud to avoid.

Mason’s other visual work is geared to achieve a similarly jarring response. She explains that, normally, “the television is kind of a wall, but also a window in some ways.” The television screen, like a car’s windshield or a white picket fence, is a “mediating object” in that it serves to separate the viewer from what it portrays. The show, however, compels the viewer to transgress these divisions and in so doing makes the audience more aware of the gap created by such mediating objects.

After taking part in “Mise en Scene,” another work that creates understanding by involving the viewer, one cannot help but wonder how many television screens it takes to make us savages. During “Mise en Scene,” the screens serve as a visual gateway to the interior of a white eight by eight foot cube, within which a barely clothed performer stands on a box with wire electrodes attached to her legs and arms. The viewer watches and listens to a television video of other viewers pressing a red button and observing, on another television set, the woman convulsing in pain.

The video-recorded audience members sought to connect with the woman inside the box, but as one of the audience members shrewdly observed, “the only way to communicate with her is to shock her.” In a telling shot a man with black-rimmed glasses repeatedly jabbed the button while looking at the screen, and turned to an off-camera friend while laughing and pointing at the television.

Mason also uses mediating objects to explore the transformation of traditionally cherished American individualism, which she describes “as a very noble kind of effort that got mangled and turned into [a] fearful position where you lock yourself inside of your tract home.”

In the piece “Open House,” the viewer is treated to posters of the detailed architectural plans of “Cul de Sac,” which the program says was made “using prefabricated building materials” such as plastic siding, and then watches a video performance of Mason and several others who built themselves inside this suburban equivalent of Thoreau’s house on Walden pond. It might take more than an axe and some whiskey to change the new individualism they are fighting, but at that moment that’s all it takes to destroy the pristine house from the inside out.

antena, 1765 S Laflin St. Through May 24. Saturday, 12-5 pm, or by appointment.

Saturday, May 10, 2008

photos from Noelle Mason show

Friday, May 9, 2008

Noelle Mason

Monday, May 5, 2008

CRAZY: Gretel Garcia and Frank Wick

Gretel Garcia and Frank Wick

Opening Friday June 6, 2008 from 6pm-10pm

june 6 - july 5

"Love can sometimes be magic. But magic can sometimes just be an illusion."
- Ali Javan (Inventor of the gas laser)

Gretel Garcia and Frank Wick are artists and ex-lovers. Their show, Crazy, brings together artwork that deals with love, intimacy, illusions and magic. There's an interaction of these terms that coexist and mingle to create an area that can be perceived as love or the absence of it. The artists question this interaction and how its plays into their personal lives and how its exists within social paradigms. The materialization of this is evident in things like personal ads. love songs, glamor shots and perfume.

Gretel Garcia Cuba was born in Havana Cuba and raised in Miami Florida since the age of 3. She received her BFA from the University of Miami with a concentration in Sculpture and a minor in Print-making. Her exhibitions include 15/Caliber (Barbra Gilmen Gallery- Miami), No Home Show (curated by Robert Chambers, Home of Eugena Vargas, Miami), Blanc,( Mexican Cultural Institute, Washington D.C.), Echelon: who is watching you? (POLVO, Chicago), Stiching Deluxe (Orleans Street Gallery, Chicago) and more recently several exhibitions in Happy Dog Gallery in Chicago. Her curatorial work includes the Motel Show - a one night exhibition in the San Juan Motel in Calle Ocho of Miami. She currently resides in Chicago.

Frank Wick was born the morning of December 4th,1970 in southern Illinois. Since then he has managed to show artwork at the Miami Art Museum, Projektraum 54 in Basel Switzerland, 2020 Projects in Miami and had his one and only solo show at The University of Tennessee Chattanooga: White Elephant. He pays his taxes like everyone else, eats and drinks too much and generally makes an attempt at keeping sane in light of what could be considered a mad world. His work tends to reflect upon that world and its inherent problems. He once said, quietly, “The world is grossly over-populated.” He didn’t elaborate but continued to sip his beer and stare at the Joey-heavy episode of Friends on the television mounted above the bar. He was also heard to mutter, “ Fuck all this. ” The statement went largely unnoticed but the sentiment was there. Frank works in a major natural history museum faux-painting replicas and making mounts for prehistoric objects and Native American artifacts.


1765 S. Laflin, St.
Chicago, IL 60608
info (at) antenapilsen (dot) com
Hours: saturdays Noon-5pm or by appointment

Friday, May 2, 2008

current show recommended by timeoutchicago

Time Out Chicago / Issue 166 : May 1–7, 2008

Dust might

Noelle Mason, Bob and Weave, 2008.

Polvo’s closure last December was a sad loss for Pilsen’s gallery scene. But cofounder Miguel Cortez says antena, his new project space around the corner, should pick up where Polvo—which took its name from the Spanish word for dust—left off. In antena’s first show (“What makes a man start fires?”) Noelle Mason uses cultural phenomena such as Superman’s X-ray vision to investigate America’s violent and security-obsessed culture. It runs through May 24.

Friday, April 25, 2008

tonight's opening

Thursday, April 24, 2008

Noelle Mason

Friday, April 18, 2008

Wednesday, April 9, 2008

Grand Opening April 25th, 2008

What makes a man start fires?
new work by Noelle Mason

Friday April 25, 2008 from 6pm-10pm

April 25 - May 24

"antena" is a new project space headed by Miguel Cortez of the Polvo Collective. The Polvo space closed in Dec 2007 after 4 years of non-stop shows and this new space in Chicago's Pilsen neighborhood continues where the previous one left off. The spanish word "antena" means a device that is a transducer designed to transmit or receive electromagnetic waves but in this case it is meant to define it as a cultural space that transmits/broadcasts symbolically art ideas, new media and installation projects on a local and global scale.

For the first show we will showcase the work of Noelle Mason. Noelle received her MFA from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago and has a BA from the University of California-Irvine. Her past exhibits include Alagon(Chicago), Thomas Robertello Gallery(Miami), Track 16(Santa Monica, CA), la Space(Hong Kong), Polvo(Chicago) and Wendy Cooper Gallery(Chicago).

"'What makes a man start fires?' is an autobiographical investigation of the contemporary American cultural climate as seen through the lens of video games, night vision, and super-mans x-ray vision. "What makes a man start fires?" questions the atomization of society and the futile attempt to shake an addiction to anesthesia, the safety of the The picket fence; the nuclear family and perpetual childhood of privilege. The electric fence; the misplaced violence of school shooters, vigilantes and ultimate fighting champions. The virtual fence; xenophobia and the unauthorized desires of the sexually repressed. " - Noelle Mason

1765 S. Laflin, St.
Chicago, IL 60608

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

antena will open in April