Opening Reception: April 21, 5-8 pm
Open hours: Wednesday – Friday, 11AM - 5PM | Saturday 12-4PM
Chicago Artists Coalition is pleased to present Susy Bielak’s solo exhibition, Segundo Piso, continues the multidisciplinary artist’s research into the ways architecture relates to memory, destabilization, and belonging. Segunda Piso explores what it means to stitch together family, community, and memory across time and distance. The exhibition builds upon Bielak’s 2021 installation, Cuarto de Estar, which focused on her paternal grandparents’ home—built in Colonia Anzures in Mexico City in the 1940s, years after their immigration to Mexico from Poland. Segundo Piso incorporates images from her parents’ Mexico City apartment and the house in Pittsburgh where her family settled in the 1980s. Each element of the installation evokes experiences in these dwellings: her parents’ living room flooded with light, her twin sister climbing a staircase reflected in a vanity mirror, her father perched on a sofa. Segundo Piso’s material strategies use the functions of memory to reveal the layered concept of home in diasporic communities.
This project is partially supported by an Individual Artist Program Grant from the City of Chicago Department of Cultural Affairs & Special Events, as well as a grant from the Illinois Arts Council Agency, a state agency through federal funds provided by the National Endowment for the Arts.
Susy Bielak’s art and writing responds to issues including migration, displacement, and the relationship between domestic life and disaster. In the process, she mines personal and political histories, texts, and archives to find the allegorical possibilities and poetics of people, places, and materials. Bielak’s work has been collected and exhibited widely, including by the International Print Center, Museo Tamayo, San Diego Museum of Contemporary Art, and Walker Art Center, and published in Art Papers, Poetry Magazine, and New American Paintings. She received her MFA from the University of California, San Diego. She frequently makes work with Fred Schmalz in the collaborative Balas & Wax.
Image: Susy Bielak Singing in the dead of night: Breath Drawing #1, 2020, photograph, 12.5” x 12.5”
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