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EC Gallery

 
Address 215 N. Aberdeen, Chicago, IL, United States
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Category Art Gallery
Phone 312.850.0924
Website http://ec-gallery.com/
 
The primary focus at EC Gallery is the introduction and representation of emerging and mid-career artists whose practices traverse painting, drawing, mixed media and photo media.

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Portrait of the Gallery: EC Gallery

Portrait of the Gallery: EC Gallery Nestled in the trendy West Loop-Fulton Market District is one of the city’s newest delights, Ewa Czeremuszkin’s EC Gallery. Here, where the cool mesh with the seasonal; here, where Oprah works and hosts her tent show, Ms. Czeremuszkin grows her dream. In less than a year she has presented one group and four solo exhibitions of new and mid-career abstract painters. Most happen to be either Polish, like her, or trained at academies in Poland. Czeremuszkin, a graduate of the Academy of Fine Arts in Wroclaw, Poland, holds a masters degree in painting. The simple elegance of the petite EC Gallery, approximately eighteen-feet square, adjoins her studio, and is “a dream of mine being fulfilled,” she says. “This is my life. As an artist I wanted to promote other artists, given the difficulty of placing in galleries. I have selected those who, in my view, merit an exhibition.” She continues, “I have connections and knowledge of European artists who’ve shown in Europe, but not here. So it’s an opportunity both for them to show in the U.S. and for a U.S. audience to see their work.” One painter to whom the EC has given voice is the prolific Swiss artist Tadeusz Bilecki. Trained at the Academy of Fine Arts in Krakow, Poland, his bold colors and large format paintings illuminated the intimate space with just six works. “The Apparition of a Geisha Suite,” with its visibly over-painted, layered compositions of acrylics on translucent polyester and paper, filled and enlivened the walls of the ‘gallery box’ with its vaulted ceiling. “I saw his work as something that was fresh, different. I’d never seen something like that. It is close to my vision for the place,” Czeremuszkin commented. Currently works by Jola Jastrzab, another Academy of Fine Arts, Krakow alumni, decorate the exposed brick walls of the gallery. Her minimalist-abstracts hold few lines and singular color. They strive to electrify a style of hieroglyphs and allegorical concepts minus the parables that may well define such pieces. Her brush strokes tend to bash the canvas and paper, with such works fitting well, in both style and substance in this hip, up-close engagement. In its brief tenure on the scene, EC has presented the work of Alina Ignatowsky, photographer Paul Kowalow, and a group show including the work of Beata Garanty, Agata Czeremuszkin (Ewa’s sister), and Czeremuszkin herself, whose ethereal work has clear influences of Rothko and Cy Twombly. All art Polish, however, is not her mantra. The artist/dealer backs away from the works of radical artist Artur Zmijewski and his current movement in Poland. “When I look at something, as an aesthetic person, I enjoy looking at the latest stuff, but I don’t like sad art, tragedy. Art,” she says, “is for people to enjoy. Life is sometimes so sad, people should have something to enjoy.” Big plans for future exhibits are in the works. “I’m always looking for something new, something international, something not shown in other places,” she adds. “And this location is just great for art. It’s close to home,” she laughs. (Jeffery McNary)

Get Contemporary in Chicago

New York Magazine "Get Contemporary in Chicago" With massive museum renovations, a growing gallery district, and an active residency program, the Second City is striving for first prize in culture. By Rachel Wolff Walk the new pedestrian bridge, the Nichols Bridgeway, that opened this spring linking Millennium Park to the Art Institute ($18 for adults, $12 for seniors and students, children under 14 are free), where killer views of Lake Michigan and Frank Gehry’s free-form Jay Pritzker Pavilion await at the building’s landing spot. Inside, wander through the Renzo Piano–designed Modern Wing, where you'll find a veritable hit parade of 20th- and 21st-century pieces spattered with gems rarely shown in the main building. Afterward, visit the nearby Museum of Contemporary Art ($12 suggested admission). The current exhibit, “Constellations,” makes good on new director Madeleine Grynsztejn’s pledge to promote area artists by including eighteen of them. Finish at the Spertus Museum, the award-winning Jewish art and culture museum at the Spertus Institute, which reopened in late 2007 in a brand-new building (next door to where the old museum was) and now features an interactive children’s center ($7 for adults, $5 for children; children under 5 are free). Gallery-hop through the West Loop, a Chelsea-like art scene where cutting-edge commercial and nonprofit art spaces are popping up in post-industrial buildings. Swing by North Peoria Street to the Rhona Hoffman Gallery for big names like Kehinde Wiley and Sol LeWitt, then visit the Peter Miller Gallery on the same floor for lesser-known contemporary painters. Walk across the street to the experimental nonprofit threewalls to find quirky, themed group shows; affordable artist-designed tchotchkes; and independent art zine Paper & Carriage, nominated for a 2009 Utne Independent Press Award. Finish at neighborhood newcomer EC Gallery for a fascinating roster of emerging and mid-career artists from Poland working in oil on canvas, mixed media, and prints. On the first Friday of the month, attend a public opening at the Flat Iron Arts Building. For a more polished presentation, walk a few blocks south to the recently relocated Monique Meloche gallery, a former West Loop resident that boasts an impressive roster of buzzy natives like local photographer and video artist Carrie Schneider.

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