The First Art Newspaper on the Net   Established in 1996 United States Monday, May 21, 2018

William J. O'Brien's first major survey exhibition opens at The Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago
William J. O'Brien, Untitled, 2012. Courtesy the artist and Marianne Boesky Gallery, New York. © William J. O'Brien. Image courtesy of the artist; Shane Campbell Gallery, Chicago; Marianne Boesky Gallery, New York.

CHICAGO, IL.- The Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago presents Chicago-based multimedia artist William J. O’Brien’s first major survey exhibition. Best known for his work in ceramics, O’Brien’s exhibition features his prolific output in a range of media including sculpture, drawing, assemblage, and painting. Cultural sources, such as art history, ethnography, spirituality, pop, and poetics, strongly inform his work and his ever-expanding scope of influence. William J. O’Brien includes more than 130 objects in various media and offers a visual profusion of color and pattern. This exhibition is organized by Naomi Beckwith, Marilyn and Larry Fields Curator at MCA Chicago, and is on view January 25 - May 18, 2014.

O’Brien’s highly physical practice, while not categorized by any one artistic style or medium, is characterized by a kinetic use of the body and materials. His fast line drawings, whether black and white or strikingly colorful, textured, and geometric, mimic the spontaneous drawings of the Surrealists or psychedelia. These energetic, vibrant shapes are the formal and conceptual starting point for all of his work, also appearing in his assemblages and textiles.

O’Brien also creates sculptural metal works made of welded die-cut shapes and ceramics that connect to a range of cultural references. His ceramics, which are formed and glazed with vivid, bold colors, look like ethnographic objects of the ancient past and “face-jugs” reminiscent of those of the Antebellum American South. O’Brien’s paintings are accumulations of pigment, fabric, string, and other materials, and with these materials, the pieces can look like they are drooping off of the wall. Beckwith’s curatorial vision is to show shared traits that emerge across O’Brien’s work, and the range of objects he creates.

The organization of the exhibition is influenced by O’Brien’s interest in language and poetry. Like a poem, the exhibition is divided into sections, or stanzas, with each section featuring works in several media. This arrangement underscores the connections between objects, and with poetics as an organizational method, the exhibition explores O’Brien’s abstract artworks differently than the ways in which they have been exhibited previously. Beckwith highlights O’Brien’s process rather than focusing entirely on his technique.

O’Brien earned an MFA in fiber and material studies from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago in 2005, the same year he presented his first solo exhibition as part of the UBS 12 x 12 series at the MCA. O’Brien has exhibited internationally, and has a show in Paris at the Almine Rech Gallery running concurrently with his presentation at the MCA. Recent solo exhibitions also include Wet 'N Wild, Marianne Boesky Gallery, New York, NY (2013); Nerman Museum of Contemporary Art, Overland Park, Kansas (2012); Works on Paper, SHAHEEN Modern and Contemporary Art, Cleveland, Ohio (2011); and the Renaissance Society at the University of Chicago, Chicago (2011).

Today's News

January 26, 2014

"New Order II: British Art Today" exhibition opens at the Saatchi Gallery in London

"Joseph Wright of Derby: Bath and Beyond" opens at the Holburne Museum in Bath

Pivotal work by Gaitonde to lead Modern & Contemporary South Asian Art sale in New York

Jean-Honoré Fragonard masterpieces reunited at Toledo Museum of Art after 25 years

American Folk art from the Collection of Ralph O. Esmerian achieves $13 million at Sotheby's New York

Paul Newman's working script for the Academy Award winning film The Sting up for auction

Guggenheim presents "Carrie Mae Weems: Three Decades of Photography and Video"

The Galleries at Moore College of Art & Design open a survey of punk and post-punk graphic design

LAEDC publishes economic impact study of LACMA's Transformation Project

Architecture of Density: Exhibition of iconic works by Michael Wolf on view at Flowers gallery

"Taking Shots: The Photography of William S. Burroughs" on view at The Photographers' Gallery

First exhibition at Friedman Benda for American painter Ena Swansea opens in New York

The journeys to the end of the world arrive at MACBA with "Before Our Eyes. Other Cartographies of the Rif"

William J. O'Brien's first major survey exhibition opens at The Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago

La voix humaine: Kunstverein Munchen opens group exhibition based on Jean Cocteau's one-act play

Exhibition of new work by Kota Ezawa on view at Christopher Grimes Gallery

Haus der Kunst exhibits a selection of videos and film installations from the Goetz Collection

Exhibition offers a glimpse into the Ryan McGinness' studio and the process for his VMFA commission

Half a million archeological items 'pillaged' annually in France

Associated Press asks George Zimmerman to halt painting sale

University of Richmond Museums opens "Virginia Rocks! Geologic Selections from the Collection"

All Lit Up On Wine: Debut solo exhibition by Thrush Holmes opens at Mike Weiss Gallery

Christie's Jewelry reports $678.3 million in sales for 2013

Most Popular Last Seven Days

1.- Boy and an amateur archaeologist unearth legendary Danish king's trove in Germany

2.- Exhibition at The Met illustrates what visitors encountered at The palace of Versailles

3.- Philadelphia Museum of Art opens "Modern Times: American Art 1910-1950"

4.- Exhibition at Michael Hoppen Gallery presents a cross-section of works from Thomas Mailaender's career

5.- New York's Chelsea Hotel celebrity door auction raises $400,000

6.- Stevie Ray Vaughan's first guitar drives Entertainment & Music Memorabilia Auction to nearly $2.9 million

7.- Lichtenstein's Nude with Blue Hair tops $2.4 million sale of Modern & Contemporary Prints & Multiples

8.- $6.7 million Fancy Intense Blue Diamond sets auction record at Sotheby's New York

9.- Mexico court blocks sales of controversial Frida Kahlo Barbie doll

10.- Dutch museums to conduct new research on the paintings of Pieter de Hooch

Museums, Exhibits, Artists, Milestones, Digital Art, Architecture, Photography,
Photographers, Special Photos, Special Reports, Featured Stories, Auctions, Art Fairs,
Anecdotes, Art Quiz, Education, Mythology, 3D Images, Last Week, .


Ignacio Villarreal
Editor & Publisher:Jose Villarreal - Consultant: Ignacio Villarreal Jr.
Art Director: Juan José Sepúlveda Ramírez

Royalville Communications, Inc
Founder's Site. The most varied versions
of this beautiful prayer.
to a Mexican poet.

The First Art Newspaper on the Net. The Best Versions Of Ave Maria Song Junco de la Vega Site Ignacio Villarreal Site
Tell a Friend
Dear User, please complete the form below in order to recommend the Artdaily newsletter to someone you know.
Please complete all fields marked *.
Sending Mail
Sending Successful