Memories of a Not-So Distant Past
“Today the real problem is the future.”
—Mayor Richard J. Daley of Chicago, sometime between 1955 and 1976.
As the mountains of mailers and earnest faces and voices on the airwaves remind us with increasing frequency, it’s the political campaign season again here in the big city. Though he claims not to be “running against anyone,” the man with the most money is waging a saturation-bombing attack. Polls show that most folks find his daily reminders “annoying,” but what does he care? He says that he’s “too busy being mayor” to watch TV, and presumably someone else picks up his mail. Meanwhile, less recognized faces are crying out for name-brand recognition.
It all could and should be very exciting, a time for vigorous debate. But if there’s a buzz right now, I haven’t felt it. The last time around, there was a semblance of action. Anthony Weiner shook up the mayor’s race, and Norman Siegel ran a spirited campaign for Public Advocate. This time out, only a handful of candidates are willing to even criticize the man with the most money. Proponents of “The Untouchable” one’s term-limits overhaul claimed that the way to get rid of entrenched politicians is to beat them at the ballot box. That argument is as credible as any election-year plan to fix the MTA.
Four years ago, such was the level of excitement that someone who shared the same name as the disgraced FEMA director, Michael Brown, received more than 35,000 votes for Public Advocate, while a figure named “Damon Cabbagestalk” garnered nearly 10,000. For all of our sake, let’s hope that a few more than 45,000 New Yorkers go to the polls on September 15th. Otherwise, we may unwittingly perform a miracle: making the first Mayor Daley a prophet.
Su Friedrich’s TodayBy Jasmine Liu
MAY 2023 | Film
Today takes place over six years, and this temporal discrepancy captures the central tension of the film, which documents Friedrichs journey to meet a basic goal she sets in the opening scene: Try to pay attention to the moment. Try to see the humor in it. Look for the beauty in things. Just take some deep breaths.
Alison Elizabeth Taylor: Future PromiseBy Susan Harris
OCT 2021 | ArtSeen
Taylors subject material in Future Promise, at James Cohan Gallery, has taken a turn toward the personal in paintings that reflect the impact of quarantine on her as an artist, mother, and person.
Candor Arts: The Chicago-Based Press Reenvisioning Equity in Arts PublishingBy Leah Gallant
APRIL 2022 | Art Books
The organization aims to restructure art publishing to fairly compensate all contributors, rather than one in which artists pay exorbitant costs to publish their work. These publishing projects function like an archive of the Chicago arts during the six years the press was active. Ranging from poetry chapbooks to photo portfolios, the more than editions produced also include the monographs accompanying major museum exhibitions.
Fehras Publishing Practices: Borrowed Faces: Future RecallBy Maximiliane Leuschner
SEPT 2021 | ArtSeen
Borrowed Faces: Future Recall at The Mosaic Rooms in London is Fehras Publishing Practices institutional debut in the United Kingdom.