Chicago Artists Coalition is pleased to present In your head, a HATCH Projects exhibition featuring Keeley Haftner, Daniel Hojnacki, and Chris Zain. In your head is curated by Meg T. Noe.
A song can quickly trigger recollections of a memory once forgotten. The struggle of remembering is a process of the mind rendering images and words that lead us back to a particular story. Beings and objects that contain sentiment connect us to a narrative that was once clear but over time has become fuzzy. Riddled by confusion, melancholy, desire and distortion, our memories are trapped in our bodies’ histories of touches and resurface like weathered puzzle pieces mashed together.
In your head is an exhibition that considers the idea of memory as information transformed through material and time. Developed out of conceptual practices, the artists’ specific connections to memory vary from the study of cognition to the body and domestic space, as a vessel for our individual lives and experiences, and the lab-like transmutation of discarded sculptors’ sculptures. Each artist approaches their material through a process of experimentation, generating objects, images, and installations that bare traces of a former life or a moment past.
Keeley Haftner (b. 1985) is a Chicago-based Canadian artist who explores her own intense yearning toward non-living matter through a sculptural practice of transformation. Haftner obtained her BFA in fine arts in 2011 from Mount Allison University (MTA) and completed her MFA in 2016 at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago (SAIC) in Fiber and Material Studies. Haftner is the founder and previous director of Street Meet Festival (Saskatoon) for street and graffiti art, now in its fifth year of programming. Keeley is currently one of the four curators and founders of Public Access gallery (Chicago), and one of three producers for the Bad at Sports THINKS to Think blog.
She has shown work internationally at events and venues including Currents International New Media Festival, Nuit Blanche (Toronto), MOCCA, aka artist-run, Hamilton Artist’s Inc., Struts gallery, Studio XX, the Bruno Arts Bank, SÍM (Iceland), Schering Stiftung (Berlin), Randy Alexander Gallery (Chicago) and the Art Institute of Chicago. She has given workshops and talks at galleries, universities, conferences and festivals including AASHE Minneapolis, Transmediale (Berlin), Concordia University (Milieux Institute), and University of Chicago (Hack Arts Lab). She was recently listed as Canadian Art’s top exhibition to see in 2017. Haftner has received grants, awards, public commissions, or residencies from the Vermont Studio Center, Ox-Bow, the Placemaker Program, Haystack Mountain School of Crafts, BMO Financial Group’s 1st Art! Art Competition, the Arts, Science & Culture Initiative Collaboration Grant, Soi Fischer, PAVED Media Arts, and HATCH Projects at the Chicago Artists Coalition. She has recently been published in the 3D Additivist Cookbook by Morehshin Allahyari & Daniel Rourke.
Daniel Hojnacki was born in Chicago Heights, IL in 1989. Hojnacki’s use of photography is driven by material experimentation embodying the investigation into the elusive act of memory. His main source is the archived image and the domestic forgotten landscape. Hojnacki’s work is persistent on the illustration of how we remember, creating fleeting ephemeral works that speak to the inherent role photography plays in memory and recollection.
Hojnacki received a BA in Photography from Columbia College Chicago in 2011. He is an educator for youth in the Chicago area at After School Matters and Marwen Foundation. Hojnacki’s work has been shown nationally and internationally including the Museum of Contemporary Photography (Chicago,IL), Milwaukee Institute of Art & Design (Milwaukee, WI), Tormenta Gallery (La Plata, Argentina), ‘Untitled’ Art Space (Vancouver, BC), Johalla Projects (Chicago, IL), The Franklin (Chicago, IL) and Chicago Art Department (Chicago,IL). His work has been reviewed and published by Hyperallergic, New City Art, LVL 3 Artist of the week, and Specimen La Revue (Lyon, France). He has been awarded the Community Assistance Arts Program Grant (CAAP Grant), the Albert P Weisman Award, and residencies at Residencia Corazón (Argentina) and the HATCH Projects with the Chicago Artists Coalition.
Chris Zain is an interdisciplinary artist with an insatiable curiosity in the boundary of the body in all of its physical and spiritual permutations. Her work circulates through the inability of the body to escape its edges, destined to be a self-contained sack of flesh holding mind, body and soul. Through installation she plays with the poetic and gestalt relationship of objects crafted in ceramics, fiber, paper, tar and more. These organic materials reveal the physical qualities of the body in all its mental and emotional states. Her work posits that re-activating sensorial awareness (to the body) simultaneously triggers a sense of empathy towards the fragility of being contained.
Zain holds a BA in Art History and Journalism from Loyola University Chicago, and a BFA from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago. She has shown her work most recently at For the Thundercloud Generation (Chicago), Roman Susan (Chicago), Links Hall (Chicago), the Luggage Store Gallery, (San Francisco), and Brown University’s David Winton Bell Gallery (Providence). Zain is an art educator and has ardently pursued alternative educational spaces through participating in residencies at Ox-bow School of Art, Anderson Ranch Art Center, Byrdcliffe Artist Colony and ArtReach at Lillstreet Art Center.
Meg T. Noe is an interdisciplinary artist and curator. Her curatorial practice studies aesthetics and politics. Through her work as the Exhibitions and Programming Director at Weinberg/Newton Gallery (Chicago, IL), Meg curates exhibitions focused on issues of social justice in partnership with nonprofit organizations. In two years, she organized seven exhibitions with programming for international and grassroots organizations, including “Soul Asylum” for Human Rights Watch, and “Try Youth As Youth” for the ACLU of Illinois.
Meg also likes dark things. Her artworks express a fascination with morbidity, the material of memorialization and ritual, and celebrations of the macabre under late capitalism. She received a BA in Photography from Columbia College of Chicago in 2013.