European Artists Revitalize Chicago Art Scene

Chicago has seen somewhat of a European invasion into the art scene in recent years.  The Renaissance Society, the Logan Center, and the Museum of Contemporary Art have all hired curators from Europe, and all three are doing some very exciting work.

One of the most impressive is Solveig  Øvstebø, who is now leading The Renaissance Society.  After Susanne Ghez, who held the curator position at the Renaissance Society for 40 years, announced that she was leaving to begin work at the Art Institute, the search was begun to find a suitable replacement.  And they had to look all the way in Norway to find the right match for the job.

Although she was born in Chicago, Solveig has been in Norway for some time.  She had been the director of Bergen Kunsthall for 10 years, beginning at the tender age of 29.  While there, she showed herself to be an innovative and thoughtful manager, creating the Bergen Biennial Conference and inclusive environments for all of her staff.

This experience at Bergen Kunsthall has proved helpful, as she quickly becomes someone to watch in the Chicago art world.  Although she has been in the position at the Renaissance Society since June 2013, the first show she has curated just opened in January.

For the first exhibition of her curating tenure in Chicago, Solveig has brought Berlin-based artist Nora Schultz.  Schultz’s work is created with found objects from around the site of the exhibition, in this case, that includes a newspaper read during the installation and things found in the Renaissance Society basement storage.  She takes these objects and “frees” them by taking them out of context.

Away from reference, they become lines, shapes, and colors that can be rearranged to create new 3-dimensional pieces.  Nora creates art that is unsettled, altered, and evasive.  Her thought-provoking work has led this exhibition to be listed as one of the “Top 25 Best Things To Do In January” by Chicago Magazine.

It is clear that Solveig is quickly becoming an asset to Chicago art.  And as this is just the beginning for her at the Renaissance Society, we are expecting great things from her in the coming years.

The Fine Art Studio of Rotblatt-Amrany has a gallery full of beautiful works of art that we encourage guests to view. Art from around the world has been gaining popularity in Chicago. This is very exciting for Chicago artists, including the Rotblatt-Amrany studio artists. Contact us or view our website to learn more about our studio!