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Wrightwood 659 adds time and programming to About Face: Stonewall exhibit

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( CHICAGO, IL — June 26, 2019 ) Wrightwood 659 is proud to announce a two-week extension for About Face: Stonewall, Revolt and New Queer Art, now on view through Saturday, August 3. A series of new programs has been added, including a panel discussion held on the 50-year anniversary of the start of the Stonewall Uprising and an exhibition closing party. The gallery also now offers free public tours twice weekly and welcomes a new addition by artist Patricia Cronin called "Memorial to a Marriage," on display on the second floor at Wrightwood 659.

Curated by acclaimed activist, art historian, educator, and writer Jonathan David Katz, PhD, About Face: Stonewall, Revolt and New Queer Art runs at Wrightwood 659, a private, non-collecting institution devoted to socially engaged art and architecture located at 659 W. Wrightwood Avenue in Chicago.

Free general admission tickets are available online only and will be released each Monday for the current week. Visitors wishing to reserve tickets farther in advance may purchase advance tickets online for $20. Walk-ins are not accommodated. All programs take place at Wrightwood 659 and are included with admission and open to the public. For all tickets visit

Panel Discussion: Voices from the Community

Friday, June 28 — 6:30 p.m.

Voices from the Community is a discussion that actively engages audiences with the content in About Face, providing perspectives other than the opinion of the curator or the institution. This dialogue addresses key themes that arise within the exhibition's content. Participants include Brendan Fernandes, artist and current Whitney Biennial participant; Sarita Hernandez, arts educator and co-founder of Marimacha Monarca Press; artist and social worker Jessie Mott; Lisa Stone, Curator of the Roger Brown Study Collection; and LaSaia Wade, Executive Director of Brave Space Alliance. This panel is moderated by Wrightwood 659 Exhibitions Manager, Lauren Leving.

Lecture: Dark Divisions of Labor: Keijaun Thomas' "My Last American Dollar"

Friday, July 12 — 6:00 p.m.

Joshua Chambers-Letson, Associate Professor of Performance Studies at Northwestern University, provides a meditation on the work of Keijaun Thomas and the labor of hospitality in "My Last American Dollar." A fragmented fragment on the racialized and gendered divisions of labor affecting black trans and black femme life. A reverse genealogy of a family caught in the tide of slavery's undoings. A story about a performance with a weak and strong power to remake everything.

Artist Talk

Friday, July 19 — 6:00 p.m.

Talk by Dance to the Berdashe artist, Kent Monkman.

Closing Party

Friday, August 2 — 6:00 p.m.

A celebration with performances and a DJ, joined by exhibiting artists and neighbors. Additional tickets will be released online for the general public to attend.

Cinema Saturdays

In partnership with the longest-running, largest LGBTQ film festival Frameline, Wrightwood 659 presents Cinema Saturdays: Queer films from Frameline's Archives over four consecutive Saturdays, July 13-August 3. Cinema Saturdays works to rediscover forgotten LGBTQ films covering themes ranging from gender and identity. The films subject matter begins at 1969 and moves forward ( including '80s and '90s ) to what it means to be a queer politician running for election today. Each film explores themes and subjects raised in the About Face exhibition and allows for a broader context and understanding of the specific works currently on view at Wrightwood 659. These films show, through a cinematic lens, the transgression, transformation, and transcendence of queer communities around the world. More details TBA.

Gallery tours

Gallery tours are available every Thursday at 6:00 p.m. and Saturday at 11:00 a.m. There will be no tours during the week of July 4. Reservations are required and free, and can be made online at

Exhibition Overview

Wrightwood 659 hails the Stonewall Rebellion—which spurred the modern-day movement for LGBTQ equality—with a major exhibition marking the 50th anniversary of that historic event. Entitled About Face: Stonewall, Revolt and New Queer Art, the exhibition comprises historical and contemporary works by international artists that, viewed together, provide a nuanced picture of the evolving meaning of queerness.

About the Stonewall Rebellion

The Stonewall Rebellion ( also referred to as the Stonewall Riots or the Stonewall Uprising ) was a series of spontaneous demonstrations by members of the LGBTQ community against a discriminatory police raid that took place in 1969 in New York City. Before the 1960s, living openly as an LGBTQ person was illegal, and New York City laws against homosexual activities were particularly harsh. Just after 3 a.m. on June 28, 1969, police raided the Stonewall Inn, a gay club in the Greenwich Village neighborhood of Manhattan, which resulted in violent riots by the club patrons and the community residents. The riots lasted for five nights and started a nationwide movement for the LGBTQ population to unite and openly fight for LGBTQ rights.

Exhibition Credits

About Face: Stonewall, Revolt and New Queer Art is made possible by the Alphawood Foundation-Chicago.

The exhibition is curated by former co-curator of the groundbreaking Art AIDS America exhibit, Jonathan David Katz, PhD, Visiting Professor of Gender, Sexuality and Women's Studies at The University of Pennsylvania and chair of the doctoral program in Visual Studies at the University at Buffalo.

Wrightwood 659, a private, non-collecting institution which opened in late 2018, presents three public exhibitions annually, devoted to socially engaged art and to architecture. Located in Chicago's Lincoln Park neighborhood, Wrightwood 659 was designed by Pritzker Prize-winning architect Tadao Ando, who transformed a 1920s building with his signature concrete forms and poetic treatment of natural light.

Future exhibitions at Wrightwood 659 will include a presentation of work by Japanese painter Tetsuya Ishida ( 1973—2005 ), organized in collaboration with the Museo Reina Sofia in Madrid, on view at Wrightwood 659 in fall 2019. In spring 2020 Wrightwood 659 will present Allure of Matter, a major exhibition of contemporary experimental art in China, presented in partnership with the Smart Museum of Art at the University of Chicago. For additional information:

—From a press release

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