Chicago Artists Coalition is pleased to present Islands of the Sun, a HATCH Projects exhibition featuring works by Soheila Azadi, Jeremiah Jones, and Hillary Wiedemann. Islands of the Sun is curated by George William Price.
Through this exhibition Azadi, Jones, and Wiedemann create a lineage and, ultimately, an intergenerational conversation between those that have adopted and abandoned the strategies of utopian politics. These artists negotiate multiple exchanges: from Azadi’s performative story-telling and sculpture, and Jones’s collages of projected movement and color, to Wiedemann’s traversing of space through the manipulation of both natural and artificial light. These conversations can be articulated as fields of tension—from feminism to radical activism, astrology to astrophysics—with multiple points of entry and opinion, where knowledge and, more specifically, a self-reflexive knowledge is produced.
Islands of the Sun utilizes rhythm as a conceptual structure from which ideas can develop and disseminate. The unique rhythm of Islands of the Sun emerges between the continuity and discontinuity of time, memory, and visual perception—signified through its own manifestation in the works exhibited. Azadi, Jones, and Wiedemann have navigated in-between the spaces, cracks, and crevices of the gallery space—being moved by and moving others. This exhibition exists as an elaborate science fiction, a visceral celebration of the summer solstice, a beautiful psychedelic trip. Islands of the Sun embraces community, collective memory, and self-exploration as reflexive, rhythmic waveforms that forever cycle between acts of forgetting and remembering.
Soheila Azadi is an interdisciplinary visual artist based in Chicago and Iran. Born in Esfahān, Azadi absorbed storytelling skills through Persian miniature drawings from the age of nine. Azadi’s inspirations come from her experiences of being a woman while living under Theocracy. Now residing in the U.S., Azadi is dedicated to transnational feminism with a passionate devotion to the ways in which race, religion, gender, sexuality, class, and ethnicity intersect. Azadi uses performance art and performative installations as methods to both materialize and narrate stories about women’s everyday struggle in the world. Azadi holds an MFA from the University of Illinois at Chicago and currently teaches at Oakton Community College. She has exhibited in galleries and festivals nationally, including Rapid Pulse International Performance Festival, Woman Made Gallery, ARC Gallery as well as internationally in Germany, Canada, Brazil, Italy, and Portugal.
Jeremiah Jones is an artist, ex-con, post-activist, anarchist, now posing as posh-dandy engaged in precarious sojourns. He creates installations and videos that explore the complex histories, landscapes, and relationships that form our world. His process includes research, field production, and found images to create complex works that bring to bear contemporary systems and mythologies, incorporating seductive and beautiful formal experiments utilizing projected light and sound. He holds a BA from the Evergreen State College and an MFA from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago. His work has been exhibited at The Tacoma Art Museum, WA; The Hyde Park Art Center, IL; The Brooklyn Museum, NY; as well as numerous independent art spaces and private collections in Los Angeles, New York, and Chicago.
Hillary Wiedemann is interested in the transience of perception and the shifts that occur between the passive and active states of experience, as well as the moments when you are looking and then see, and when you are hearing and then listen. Using controlled light, both natural and artificially produced, in combination with minimal materials, she expands the subtleties of these in-between states into larger scale installations. Wiedemann received her MFA in Sculpture from California College of the Arts and a BFA in Glass from the Rhode Island School of Design. She has exhibited her work in the San Francisco Bay Area; Los Angeles, CA; Kansas City, MO; and Brooklyn, NY. Additionally, she has helped to organize a variety of exhibitions, most recently serving as a Co-Director of the Royal NoneSuch Gallery in Oakland, CA.
George William Price is an arts administrator and curator invested in artistic and political expressions that engender alternative, avuncular, and non-hierarchical histories. Price is the Development and Marketing Manager at Video Data Bank, a leading resource in the United States for video by and about contemporary artists. He was the founder and director of FLATspace, a curatorial project created to further the professional development of early-career practitioners across Chicagoland and foster connections with the academic community.
Price has curated and administered numerous exhibitions and moving image programs for institutions such as Conversations at the Edge, Chicago Urban Art Society, Rapid Pulse International Performance Festival, and University of the Arts London. He has also worked for a number of arts organizations in both the USA and UK including Matt’s Gallery, London; Electronic Arts Intermix, New York City; and PAHC / studio, Chicago.