Smart Museum Exhibition ‘Go Figure’ Examines the Human Form in Contemporary Art

Exhibition features new and iconic figurative works from Chicago and beyond

The University of Chicago’s Smart Museum of Art announces Go Figure, a new exhibition that examines the human form in contemporary art. Exhibition open June 30 – September 4, 2011.

Despite their varied approaches to media and subject, these artists are bound by their sustained engagement with the human figure and by their use of pattern as a visual strategy to enhance, entice, or complicate our viewing experience.

Sylviva Sleigh, detail of The Turkish Bath, 1973. © Estate of Sylvia Sleigh Alloway.

“Go Figure” brings together exemplary paintings, drawings, prints, and sculpture that highlight the Smart Museum’s contemporary collection. It also includes select loans from other collections in Chicago and two works created especially for the exhibition — a new Soundsuit from Nick Cave and a site-specific installation by Clare Rojas. Together, the works explore issues of identity, personal history, and social change and, in doing so, reveal the versatile capacity of art to capture the diversity and complexity of contemporary human experience. The exhibition is accompanied by a series of video interviews showcasing several of the artists discussing their own ideas about the human form, materials, and the artistic process. These video clips will be shown in context with each artist’s work on iPads located throughout the galleries and will also be available online.

As the art museum of the University of Chicago, the Smart Museum of Art takes a distinctly interdisciplinary approach to the collection, display, and interpretation of art. Founded in 1974, the Smart is home to acclaimed special exhibitions and a permanent collection that spans five thousand years of artistic creation. Working in close collaboration with scholars from the University of Chicago, the Smart has established itself as a leading academic art museum and an engine of adventurous thinking about the visual arts and their place in society. The David and Alfred Smart Museum of Art promotes the understanding of the visual arts and their importance to cultural and intellectual history through direct experiences with original works of art and through an interdisciplinary approach to its collections, exhibitions, publications, and programs. These activities support life-long learning among a range of audiences including the University and the broader community.

Smart Museum of Art, The University of Chicago
5550 South Greenwood Avenue
Chicago, Illinois 60637

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