Health Club

Health Club presents work by artists considering the interdependence of human wellness on constructed notions of place. Not in the obvious spots like the gym or the spa, but the seemingly benevolent locations like museums, hospitals, or parks, can we really examine how a society relies on the built environment to foster mental or physical health. Drawing, installation, painting, photography, and video included in the exhibition call attention to conflicting principles historically embedded in the architecture of such recreational places that nurture both public and private growth. As a result, we come to be more observant of the functions of these voluntary civic and leisure sites, how our bodies move through them, and question our role in realizing their intentions. 

Image above: Nelly Agassi, Untitled from  the Horrortopia series, 2017, found post card and embroidery floss, 3 x 5 inches

  • December 9, 2018 – March 3, 2019
  • Gallery 1 & Jackman Goldwasser Catwalk Gallery

Health Club is generously supported in part by:



Featured Artists

Nelly Agassi, Balas & Wax, Yane Calovski and Hristina Ivanoska, FieldWork, Charo Garaigorta, Faheem Majeed, Kevin Miyazaki, and Bridget O’Gorman

Health Club is curated by Allison Peters Quinn

These artists observe the interdependence of human wellness on constructed notions of place by focusing on sites of civic and leisure activities. This contemplation does not focus on obvious venues such as gyms or spas, but locations including museums, hospitals, airports, and other public places, by which the artists can examine how society’s built environments can foster—or deteriorate—health, both mental and physical.

Hospitals and parks facilitate health in the most direct manner on the body, however artists Nelly Agassi and Andrew Schachman of Fieldwork create work that complicates common assumptions of these places of recovery and suggests greater potential as a site for community and imagination. Museums and cultural centers addressed in the work of Yane Calovski & Hristina Ivanoska, Faheem Majeed, and Bridget O’Gorman point out the aspirations and paradoxes in these mission driven places to promote public learning and engagement with their collections, while also mandating strict care and distance of the public from their historical objects as proxy of the body. Finally, artists Balas & Wax, Kevin J. Miyazaki, and Charo Garaigorta independently consider the leisure spaces of travel and accommodations and highlight the tension between being protected and being controlled through architecture.

About Allison Peters Quinn

Mazza headshot

Allison Peters Quinn is the Director of Exhibition & Residency Programs at the Hyde Park Art Center, where she has curated exhibitions, and produced symposiums, performances and publications since 2004. Her work over the past 10 years has been focused on projects that address intersections between art, public space, and civically-minded practices. Her essays have appeared in art anthologies including Service Media: Is it Public Art or Art in Public Space (2013), and The Artists Run Chicago Digest (2009) in addition to Proximity Magazine and artists’ monographic publications on Cándida Alvarez, Susan Giles, Jefferson Pinder, William Steiger, and Rodrigo Lara Zendejas to name a few.  Quinn has organized significant exhibitions for emerging and established artists based in Chicago, such as Cándida Alvarez, Theaster Gates, Stockyard Institute, and Bibiana Suárez.  She has also served on national jury competitions, grant review committees and critique panels and taught curatorial seminars at The University of Chicago Graham School and the School of the Art Institute of Chicago.

Image courtesy of Joe Mazza.



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