A professional development program for artists who are ready to raise their practice to the next level, The Center Program offers the unique opportunity to develop new work, receive feedback from art professionals in the field, and work towards an exhibition at the Art Center. Over the course of eight months, a supportive peer network, guest artists, gallerists, critics, and professionals push 20 Center Program artists to answer tough questions and evolve their practice. Guest curated by Asha Iman Veal, the 2021 exhibition will introduce strong, new work that often determine bold new directions for local artists. From conceptual multiplicity, to the body as monument. This year’s Center Program cohort of twenty tremendous artists collectively and boldly proposes their artistic authorship of a better world.

  • December 12, 2021 – March 20, 2022
  • Gallery 1, 2, Cleve Carney Gallery, and Jackman Goldwasser Catwalk Gallery

Supported by:


Featured Artists

Cecilia Beaven Gallegos, Dorothy Burge, Cathleen Campbell, Teresita Carson, Jonathan Castillo, Jason Dunda, Sarabeth Dunton, Tanya Gill, Brooke Hummer, Janis Kanter, Mayumi Lake, Percy Lam, D. Lammie-Hanson, Frances Lee, JeeYeun Lee, Cydney Lewis, Susannah Papish, Monika Plioplyte, Monica Rickert-Bolter, and Allison Svoboda.

About Asha Iman Veal

Asha Iman Veal is a curator whose work advocates cross-cultural solidarity across communities kept apart due to geographic or political distance. She is the curatorial fellow at Museum of Contemporary Photography (Chicago), and is a democracy fellow with the Alfred Landecker Foundation and Humanity in Action (Berlin). Asha Iman is Adjunct Assistant Professor in the Department of Arts Administration & Policy at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago. Her recent and upcoming exhibitions include a solo show of work by artist Martine Gutierez at MoCP (2021); the Raisin exhibition at 6018North as part of the Chicago Architecture Biennial (2021); The Tokyo Show: Black and Brown Are Beautiful at Hyde Park Art Center (2019); and Preview 9: A Boldness to Dare and Try at Chicago Artists Coalition (2019).

Asha has recently juried for Arts + Public Life and the Center for the Study of Race, Politics, and Culture at the University of Chicago; Experimental Sound Studio; 3Arts; OxBow; and ACRE. Her additional background includes researching arts organization models and contemporary projects, touring arts ecologies and/or participating on projects and working in Chicago, New York, Edinburgh, Vietnam, Juárez, New York, Havana, Tokyo and more. She is a member of the BMW Foundation Responsible Leaders Network (global table) and Transatlantic Core Group (Germany/U.S.) as a voice for nonprofit arts; and is a new member of the Board of Heaven Gallery. (B.A. The Gallatin School at New York University, M.F.A. The New School, M.A. School of the Art Institute of Chicago)


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