Not Just Another Pretty Face 2023

The exhibition commemorates the 2020 and 2023 iterations of Not Just Another Pretty Face. The triennial program, created by Hyde Park Art Center in the mid-1990s, introduces artists and potential art buyers. This project facilitates a fun and accessible commissioning process that builds lasting relationships between artists and patrons, creates a new base of support for artists, and invests in the vitality of Chicago’s cultural community.

Not Just Another Pretty Face cultivates collectors, who are essential to the “ecosystem” that artists need to thrive,by embracing and encouraging the concept of patronage in contemporary art. Artists need not only consumers (i.e. collectors,) but also a community of people who know, support, and value what they do.

To date, the Art Center has raised more than $1,000,000—half of which goes directly into the hands of artists, with the other half supporting Art Center programs. Through Not Just Another Pretty Face, 375+ original works of art have been commissioned by 275 new and established collectors interested in investing in Chicago’s artists.


Click below to learn more about the program:



Banner image: Detail of From Above: I-80 at rte 30, by Rubén Aguirre, commissioned by The Leahy Family, NLX Beverage Solutions, 2023, Spray paint and acrylic on wood panel, 48 x 288 x 1 ½ inches

  • September 14 – November 5, 2023
  • Gallery 1, 2  & Cleve E. Carney Gallery
  • Unveiling Day: Thursday, September 14, 6:30 – 8:30 pm 

Not Just Another Pretty Face 2023


  • More than $500,000 directly in the hands of talented local artists
  • More than $500,000 invested in the Hyde Park Art Center’s programs
  • More than 425 original works of art
  • 300 collectors, new and established, participating in Chicago’s art ecosystem by commissioning work from local artists they now know and can continue to follow
  • A new model for how an institution can support its city’s artists in a way that is fun, distinctive and sustainable—replicated by organizations in Boise, Indianapolis, Philadelphia and Salt Lake

Commissioned Artists

Ani Afshar, Rubén Aguirre, Dabin Ahn, Alexandra Antoine, Narseal Batiste, Cecilia Beaven, Paul Branton, Dalton Brown, Jonathan Castillo, Cesar Conde, Maggie Crowley, Lenin Delsol, Jenal Dolson, Jason Dunda, Lora Fosberg, Peter Frederiksen, Madeline Gallucci, Azadeh Gholizadeh, Susan Giles, Peter N. Gray, Rhonda Gray, Max Guy, D. Lammie Hanson, Alice Hargrave, Brooke Hummer, Candace Hunter, Industry of the Ordinary (Adam Brooks and Mathew Wilson), Janis Kanter, Jackie Kazarian, Chad Kouri, Joe Kraft, Mayumi Lake, Rodrigo Lara Zendejas, Juan Lazaro Gutierrez, Melissa Leandro, Sophie Lucido Johnson, Joel Maxime Jr., Cecil McDonald, Jessie Mott, Sunny Neater Dubow, Sarah Nishiura, zakkiyyah najeebah dumas o’neal, Louise Pappageorge, Chris Pappan, Yoonshin Park, Pooja Pittie, Renee Robbins, Cristal Sabbagh, Tony Smith, Deb Sokolow, Kushala Vora, Martha Wade, Messejah Washington, Mel Watkin, Melissa Weber, Marvin Wells, Daniel Wilson, and Scott Wolniak.


Mariela Acuña, Raissa Bailey, Joseph Batchelor, Allison Beaulieu-Cholke, Jen and Bill Benton, Clea Braendel, Christina and Guy Caland Puymartin, Michael Darling and Ashlee Jacob, Kimberly and James Elbaor, Peggy Casey Friedman and Martin Friedman, Nickol and Darrel Hackett, Nicola Halsall Idehen and Francis Idehen, Brooke Hummer, Martha Jannotta and Jay Mittelstead, Janis Kanter and Tom McCormick, Heather Kendrick, Mary Krinock, Peter and Erin Lane, The Leahy Family and NLX Beverage Solutions, Molly and Chris Leonard, Trinita Logue, Kate Lorenz and Steve Nelson, Jill and Michael Lowe, Anna and Paul Marks, Talmadge Mason, Patric McCoy, Lisa McDonald, Alex and Claire Millet, R. Bernard Mims, Sandhya Mullangi, Sundeep Mullangi and Trissa Babrowski, Maria Nelson and Eli Barrows, Joan Pantsios, Dan Parker, Carl Peterson and Genevieve Fletcher, Kim Piccola, Colm Quinn and Allison Peters Quinn, Megha Ralapati and Adam Waytz, Claire Rice and Michael Horton, Aaron Rodgers and Zita Brizzi, Catherine and Michael Rosenberg, Bernardo and Jennifer Salazar, Garrett and Holly Shatzer, Eva Silverman, Eva Silverman and Chuck Kite, Cynthia Smith, Mirja Catherine Laksmi Spooner and Karim Omar Corringham, Chuck Thurow, Jen Tremblay Chambers and Rob Chambers, Erica and Thomas Tully Jr., Christy Uchida, Corry Williams, and Richard Wright and Valerie Carberry.

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