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Arts@UChicago: Winter contemporary art showcase in Hyde Park

Jan. 23, 2008
The University of Chicago showcased leading contemporary artists on Thursday, Jan. 31 and Friday, Feb. 1. Over a 28-hour period, the campus hosted one of the music world’s most innovative performers, launched an exhibition that features some of the world’s leading video artists, presented a dialogue on the creative process of adaptation, and hosted a performance/conversation with one of Europe’s most inventive conceptual artists.

“This winter contemporary arts showcase is all part of a huge range of contemporary arts coming to the University,” said Larry Norman, the University’s Deputy Provost for the Arts, and Associate Professor in Romance Languages and Literatures. “We’re really excited about the synergies arising from these interconnected efforts.”

The winter contemporary arts showcase served as the kick-off of a season of contemporary events at the University of Chicago’s Hyde Park campus. For more information on upcoming events at Chicago, please visit:

Smart Museum of Art:Adaptation

It’s a common practice in popular culture: Moviegoers and booklovers routinely debate whether a film version is superior to the book version. But what’s much less known is how adaptation works in the contemporary art world. How do visual artists reinterpret and re-imagine classical texts and musical scores? What obstacles and issues do they face?

Beginning Jan. 31, the Smart Museum will host “Adaptation: Video Installations by Ben-Ner, Herrera, Sullivan and Sussman & The Rufus Corporation” — one of the first exhibitions to feature the adaptations of some of the world’s leading contemporary artists. The exhibition, which will run through May 4, features one or two video installations for each artist. Installations include: Guy Ben-Ner’s “Moby Dick” (2000), adapted from the classic 1851 novel; Arturo Herrera’s “Les Noces” (2007), an adaptation of Stravinsky’s ballet, and Eve Sussman’s and The Rufus Corporation’s feature-length contemporary retelling of the Roman myth “The Rape of the Sabine Women” which was inspired, in part, by Jacques-Louis David’s 1799 painting, “The Intervention of the Sabine Women,” an earlier retelling of the myth. “Adaptation” also features two pieces from Catherine Sullivan, Assistant Professor of Visual Arts at Chicago. Sullivan’s “Triangle of Need,” which she created with a dancer/choreographer and a composer, is a multichannel, multilayered video installation.

For more information on the exhibition, and the artists, please visit images of the works in the exhibition are available online at:

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