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Best Art Exhibits Coming To Chicago In 2016

Whether building an art exhibit that's a smash from their own collections or working with other museums around the world on a crowd pleaser, Chicago art museums delight visitors and local art aficionados with amazing shows every year. Click here to see some shows from the past. For 2016, look for art expressions that reflect cultural struggles and trends. They range from colorful prints to technological influences on sculptures and paintings. The bonus from seeing the main shows is checking out the venues' other treasures.
Estampas de la Raza: Contemporary Prints From The Romo Collection
National Museum of Mexican Art
1852 W. 19th St.
Chicago, IL 60608
(312) 738-1503

Up through Aug. 14, 2016, this exhibition features more than 60 prints by artists of Mexican ancestry from after 1960 to current times. It begins with the Chicano Movement then continues with art expressions that changed as economics and identity changed around them in the United States. The show, put together by San Antonio's McNay Art Museum, has five themes: identity, tradition, struggles, culture and memory.

Kerry James Marshall: Mastry
Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago
220 E. Chicago Ave.
Chicago, IL 60622
(312) 280-2660

Mastry is not a typo. Marshall himself used the word in his Rythm Mastr project of comic book-style expressions of black heroes. But the MCA exhibit shows Marshall in all his guises using all sizes of work including large, wall-size pieces. The word reflects black jargon and African-American slave history while at the same time it refers to Marshall's mastery of all forms of art. The exhibit is a stunning retrospective that ranges from Marshall's early works on black invisibility to later explorations into nudes, abstract forms and African-American history. Organized by the MCA with the Metropolitan Museum of Art, where it will go in October, and the Museum of Contemporary Art Los Angeles, where it heads next March, the show first opens at the MCA Chicago April 23 and continues through Sept. 25, 2016.

Post Black Folk Art In America
Intuit Center for Intuitive and Outsider Art
756 N. Milwaukee Ave.
Chicago, IL 60642
(312) 243-9088

For its twenty-fifth anniversary, the Intuit Center decided to revisit the Corcoran Gallery of Art's historic1982 "Black Folk Art in America: 1930-1980." However, the Intuit exhibition under the curatorial leadership of Faheen Majeed continues on where the Corcoran left off. At the Intuit Center July 15, 2016, through Jan. 2, 2017, it will have some works by artists in the original show plus current works by black artists. Programs will also provide background into artists' styles and messages.

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Laszlo Moholy-Nagy: Future Present
Art Institute of Chicago
111 S. Michigan Ave.
Chicago,IL 60603
(312) 443-3600

Architecture and art, technology and industry all connect when the Art Institute of Chicago does "Laszlo Moholy-Nagy: Future Present," from Oct. 2, 2016 through Jan. 3, 2017. Moholy-Nagy was a Bauhaus professor who influenced industrial design. But Moholy-Nagy was also an artist who worked in several mediums. He was a painter, photographer, sculptor, typographer, printmaker and stage set designer. He also liked incorporating light and movement into his works. The Art Institute exhibition is the first major look at Moholy-Nagy's works in several decades.

The Art Of Expression
The Art Center of Highland Park
1957 Sheridan Road
Highland Park, IL 60035
(847) 432-1888

Organized by the McCormick Gallery, Chicago, The Art of Expression is in the Main Gallery of The Art Center May 5 through July 5, 2016. It showcases the works of Art Brenner, Michael Hedges, Ezio Martinelli, Lisa Nankivil, Melville Price, Darrell Roberts, Kyle Surges and Vidvuds Zviedris.

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Jodie Jacobs is a veteran journalist who loves writing about Chicago, art, theater, museums and travel. Her work can be found on
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