A Chicago Artist
Art from Chicago is always dear to my heart because it is my hometown. I lived there during the very fertile artistic period of the 1970s and 1980s. There were gallery openings every Friday night on Huron Street and Superior Street, then full of galleries representing up-and-coming artists. The artists who particularly intrigued me were those who came into their own in the late 1960s and early 1970s. One of those artists was Margaret Wharton.
|Margaret Wharton (born 1943, US), Trinity, 1975. Painting, disassembled, and reassembled chairs, 42 1/8" x 59 7/8" x 35 7/8" (107 x 152 x 91 cm). Private Collection. Photo courtesy of Phyllis Kind Gallery, Chicago. © 2012 Margaret Wharton. (8S-21756)|
Art in Chicago in the early 1970s had a strong Pop Art flavor. The Chicago School, as it was called, had a strong contingent of women artists. The “school” was characterized in general by funky, vital, and surreal imagery. Subject matter often related to current events or surreal visions of everyday objects. The work of many of the artists, Wharton included, was related in spirit to the Dada movement in Europe of between ca. 1916 and 1922. Dada emphasized the irrational in art and the transformation of the commonplace into bizarre, monumental works of art.