From Art on the Mart to an Exhibition on Snow Globes, These Are Summer’s Best Art Events

Go Down Moses/Photo courtesy of Christian Patterson

Over the next few weeks, art galleries and museums come alive with new exhibitions, screenings, and readings that highlight such topics as gender identity, plants, and the AIDS crisis. Plus: Don’t miss Art on the Mart this season or an exhibition filled with ceramic snow globes!

Ryan Nault, Mining the Pit in My Stomach. Courtesy of Carrie Secrist Gallery

“The Storytellers” at Carrie Secrist
How can a piece of art tell a story? In this group show, six local artists present works that skillfully illustrate the arc of narratives. Through paintings and one plant-inclusive installation, they explore complex emotions and conditions, from dystopian futures to myths in Mexican culture.
Details: June 29

“The Endless Body” at Tiger Strikes Asteroid
Five artists show work that examines the boundless potential of the body. Come check out paintings that explore the spectrum of gender identity, sculptures that attempt to construct body parts, and more.
Details: June 29

Limelight Parade at Art on the Mart
Don’t miss the largest work of public art in the city: Art on the Mart, a video installation on the Merchandise Mart’s historic facade. This new collaboration between scenic designer John Musial and Julia Rhoads follows the adventure of falling down the rabbit hole of everyday life, featuring fragmented choreography.
Details: June 30

Meg Leary, Bleach, 2012. / Photo courtesy of Bert Green Fine Art

“The Plant Show” at Ground Level Platform
Plants! Plants! Plants! Celebrate our Mother Earth at this group show of nearly two dozen artists, who present nature-inspired works. There will be real plants, too.
Details: July 5

Pictures of Susan at Intuit
You shouldn’t miss this fantastic exhibition of drawings by New Zealand artist Susan Te Kahurangi King, who has been silent for the majority of her life. In 2012, a documentary was made about her work and mysterious ways of expression, and you can catch it at this one-day screening.
Details: July 11

Poetry Reading at the Art Institute of Chicago
Gregg Bordowitz is an artist and activist who has made powerful, biting work that’s grappled with the AIDS crisis. Hear him read a selection of his own poetry, then go see his ongoing exhibition.
Details: July 11

Fast Trip, Long Drop, 1993. Video still 54:04 mins. © Gregg Bordowitz/Courtesy of Video Data Bank, School of the Art Institute of Chicago.

“Commedia” at Bert Green Fine Art
It’s hot out, but get in a wintry mood at this exhibition of handmade ceramic snow globes that double as music boxes. Created by artist Meg Leary, who trained as a classical singer, each holds strange objects, like an unraveled cassette tape.
Details: July 13

“Go Down Moses” at Museum of Contemporary Photography
The acclaimed critic and photographer Teju Cole curates his first exhibition, a presentation of photographs drawn from the museum’s extensive archives. Organized to flow like a poem, it touches on themes of freedom, resistance, and survival.
Details: July 18