Cartoonlike Street Art, Korean Photography, and 6 Other Upcoming Art Events Not to Miss in Chicago

Seunggu Kim, from the series “Better Days” / Courtesy of FIlter Photo

Coming up in Chicago’s art scene: cartoonlike street art, a discussion about the natural world, Korean photographs, and a new artist-run space in Pilsen.

OakOak Pop-Up at Line Dot Editions
French street artist OakOak is known for his cartoonlike figures that interact and intervene with urban infrastructure. See his work indoors in this gallery show, where new paintings, prints, and sculptural works will be on view.
Details: July 26

Sarah Barnhart Fields at ARC Gallery
Local artist Fields is a master manipulator of metal, cutting, welding, and sculpting steel into curious shapes. She presents new works that speak of death and renewal in this solo show.
Details: July 26

Courtesy of ARC Gallery

“Inner Compulsion” at OGGI, Chicago
With a needle and thread, Elnaz Javani creates gorgeous stitch drawings of partially fictional personal stories. The Iranian artist presents a series of 58 pieces that have been growing since 2013 in response to moving to the United States, all a way to explore her experiences of new geographies and identity.
Details: August 2

“Dead Futures” at Heaven Gallery
Four artists come together to explore the notion of indigeneity and the power to claim land. From performances that recontextualize Mexican films to a work inspired by Aztec ritual practices and cigar culture, this is one show not to be missed.
Details: August 2

“Tiny Beauties” at Chicago Cultural Center
Love scientific illustrations and botanical art? Join biologist Anna Edlund and artist Peggy Macnamara at this talk about their forthcoming book, which celebrates micro-wonders of the natural world. Macnamara has been the artist-in-residence at the Field Museum of Natural History since 1990, accompanying scientists on expeditions around the world to illustrate their projects, and her drawings will color this new publication.
Details: August 13

“Better Days” at Filter Photo
Hailing from Seoul, photographer Seunggu Kim is fascinated with how his fellow city folk spend their leisure time. He’s been photographing vacation spots just outside the capital, where crowds flock to pools, theme parks, and resorts; the results are surreal, sleek, and addictive.
Details: August 16

Shanthi Chandrasekar, Time Information. Courtesy of Fermilab Art Gallery

“Domina Domi” at Okay Gallery
Another artist-run space is opening in town. This Pilsen spot kicks off its programming with a solo exhibition by Bobby Meier, and it’s going to be a pretty exciting one: The local artist will show insanely furry soft sculptures that feature metallic spandex and stuffed pantyhose. You’ll be tempted to touch them.
Details: August 16

“Cosmic Design” at Fermilab Art Gallery
Come see what the current artist-in-resident of Fermilab—yes, the federal laboratory focused on high-energy collider physics—has been working on. Shanthi Chandrasekar, whose practice is informed by traditional Indian art, will show vibrant, mandalalike pieces in the institution’s art gallery.
Details: August 21