February 2017 

Society! Artwork-In-Residence Program featuring Adriana Kuri Alamillo 

DATES: March 5 – 26, 2017 


GALLERY HOURS: 9am – 9pm, Monday – Thursday; 9am – 5pm, Friday; 9am – 4pm, Saturday & Sunday 


The Evanston Art Center (EAC) is pleased to announce its fifth Society! artist resident, Adriana Kuri Alamillo, who will occupy the upstairs gallery at the Art Center from March 5 - 26, 2017. Kuri was born in Mexico City, Mexico, and currently lives and works in Chicago, Illinois. She holds a Bachelor of Fine Arts with an emphasis in Art History, Theory and Criticism from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago, and works as a Gallery Manager for Rhona Hoffman Gallery. Her research and writing practice explores the U.S.-Mexico Border as a physical and conceptual space for creation, the formation of a cross-cultural and cross-border identity, and activism through making. She treads the thin line between art and activism in both her studio and research. 

For her project, Kuri is working on a series of weavings, using homemade backstrap looms that visualize and obfuscate the numbered information received regarding the deaths and disappearances related to the War on Drugs. 

In the project space, Kuri will present pre-prepared bundles of white yarn and containers of red and black paint. Visitors to the space will be invited to write their own thoughts and protests in regards to the war on drugs and the effects it has had towards human life. On the opposite wall, the artist will install three working backstrap looms, where she will weave on Sundays and Thursdays throughout the course of the residency. The other two looms are there as an invitation for people to sit and weave with her, counting each string they feed into the weaving and reflecting on every life that each string represents. Kuri hopes to encourage audience participation in the shared activity of creation, to reflect and to have conversation, because “weaving and textile work is, at the end of the day, a historically communal activity.” 

Kuri’s studio production is rooted in weaving, appropriating Mexican cultural craft tradition to break down borders and point out the misconceptions. Her research and writing practice on the other hand further analyzes the effects and consequences of the fraught contact zones that surround the U.S.-Mexico Border. The production of physical objects is tied intimately to her research, and her avenues of research are inspired by the ideas and problems that come up during the production of her own studio work. This work deals with and makes comments on the social, political and racial issues that Kuri is confronted with on an almost daily basis, by employing strategies of social engagement and activism. 

The mediation of Kuri’s identity is both entrenched and explored in her practice. The ideas that drive her work are firmly rooted in the identity politics of a cross-cultural, globalized world chock-full of divisions and power structures. Kuri’s interests also lie in exploring herself and those around her as we all learn to stake a claim regarding who we are, and in turn influence the ways in which we think about race, culture, country, and personal identity. Recognizing the existence of borders, physical and theoretical, Kuri explores the ways in which artists mediate these spaces as both cultural producers and activists. 

Curator Jessica Cochran states, “The different aspects of Kuri’s multi-faceted practice, from her studio work to her writing, coalesce around issues that are elemental to ways of being in the world today. There 

is little more important than the work of considering ideas of identity across boundaries. Kuri does this in an approachable, illuminating fashion.” 

Launched in June 2016, Society! is an artwork-in-residence program curated by Jessica Cochran and hosted by the Evanston Art Center. The program brings 6 artists over the course of a year to “move into” the gallery for 4-6 week residencies where they can work on projects-in-progress, experiment with the display of their artwork, host studio visits, and engage the community of the Evanston Art Center. For each artist, this studio/exhibition space is a blank slate, fresh semi-public environment and a temporary platform designed for making, showing, thinking, writing, experimenting and talking within a dynamic and thriving creative community. In addition, artists are invited to utilize the studios and class offerings at the Evanston Art Center for the duration of their residency. 

Jessica Cochran is a curator living and working in Chicago. She is currently completing a curatorial fellowship at the Gaylord and Dorothy Donnelley Foundation and her upcoming exhibitions include Roman Susan (Chicago), McCormick Gallery (Chicago), Center for the Book (New York) and the Hyde Park Art Center (Chicago). After seven years spent in academic galleries, she is now a lecturer at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago and the curatorial manager of a growing private collection of contemporary art based in Chicago, Indiana and Palm Springs. 

Upcoming residents during the Society! program include David Giordano from April 1 – 28, 2017. 

Evanston Art Center, a nonprofit 501 (c)(3) organization, is dedicated to fostering the appreciation and expression of the arts among diverse audiences. The Art Center offers extensive and innovative instruction in broad areas of artistic endeavor through classes, exhibitions, interactive arts activities, and community outreach initiatives. 

Evanston Art Center is located at 1717 Central Street, Evanston, IL. Evanston Art Center Gallery Hours: 9am – 9pm, Monday – Thursday;9am – 5pm, Friday; 9am – 4pm, Saturday & Sunday. First and second floor gallery spaces are handicapped accessible. Limited free parking is available. 

For more information, please visit us online at www.evanstonartcenter.org or contact Cara Feeney, Manager of Exhibitions, at (847) 475-5300. Visit the Evanston Art Center on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/EvanstonArtCenter/, follow us on Twitter: www.twitter.com/#!/evartcenter, or on Instagram: @EvanstonArtCenter. 


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