The U.S. flag is on display this month at a gallery in Wicker Park, but it’s not part of a show about patriotism.
Or is it?
Curators of “Oppositions” at the Jackson Junge Gallery wanted to highlight political issues without taking sides.
That’s where the flag comes in. Evan Haase’s “Old Glory” is made from more than 15,000 bullet casings – an overt reference to guns in a city rife with shootings.
But the 40 works of art on display – including “Old Glory” – are open to interpretation.
“I didn’t want it to be a political, Trump-bashing show,” said Chris Jackson, the gallery’s owner and director. “There’s a lot of point of views that should be explored, so it was very important for me to keep it open.”
Mixed media, sculptures and paintings from local and national artists delve into issues of race, identity and social justice.
The sculpture “True Colors” depicts a faceless African-American woman with a large afro, while the mixed-media piece “For the Prettiest One” is inspired by Discordia, the Greek goddess of discord and confusion.
Jackson said that art’s inherent ability to push perspectives serves an instrumental role in times of political divisiveness.
“It’s important for art to get involved, it makes people see things a little bit differently,” Jackson said.
“Oppositions” is free to the public and on display through April 31 at the Jackson Junge Gallery.
March 31: “I hope that when black people look at it they see how powerful and beautiful we are despite everything that’s happened to us,” said artist Ervin A. Johnson.
March 23: The changing face of glaciers around the world is the topic of a new exhibition at the Museum of Science and Industry.
March 13: Artistic responses to the politically pointed term are on display starting this week at the University of Illinois at Chicago. Learn about the “Sanctuary” exhibit.