Hyde Park Art Center presents solo exhibition considering paradox of essential work force during pandemic Maggie Crowley: Playmate

Hyde Park Art Center presents solo exhibition considering paradox of essential work force during pandemic Maggie Crowley: Playmate

Hyde Park Art Center presents solo exhibition

considering paradox of essential work force during pandemic

Maggie Crowley: Playmate

April 12 – June 5, 2021


CHICAGO (March 17, 2021)—Hyde Park Art Center, the renowned non-profit hub for contemporary art located on Chicago’s vibrant South Side, announces Maggie Crowley: Playmate, a solo exhibition of new textile work and large figurative paintings in acrylic on silk, on view April 12 – June 5. 


In her first solo exhibition in Chicago, Crowley presents this new series examining her admiration and personal connection to service. Uniforms and accessories, like safety vests, gloves, and coolers, identify public workers and render them visible, while conducting labor that is considered invisible. Crowley considers this contradiction as it relates to the value placed on essential work – a discrepancy recently heightened in the U.S. by the pandemic. The exhibition title, Playmate, references the portable Igloo cooler beloved by laborers; Crowley chose the object as a symbol of the care, foresight, and independence of the skilled work force. 


Maggie Crowley received her M.F.A. from the University of Chicago, her M.A. from Eastern Illinois University and her B.S. from Illinois State University. Crowley has exhibited in group shows at numerous venues including the Reva and David Logan Center for the Arts, Evanston Art Center, Hyde Park Art Center, Area: Lugar de Proyectos in Caguas, Puerto Rico and 65Grand in Chicago. Since 2014, Crowley has co-directed the Produce Model Gallery in the Pilsen neighborhood, dedicated to programming and exhibitions featuring Caribbean and Latinx artists. She serves on the board of Chicago’s International Children’s Media Center, helping to facilitate education programs for prisons, jails and at-risk students here. She is a 2014 alumna of the Art Center’s Ground Floor exhibition of Chicago MFA graduates; the 2020-21 edition of Ground Floor is currently mounted. 


Running concurrently with Maggie Crowley: Playmate will be two additional solo exhibitions: Cuts and Beats, by Chicago-based artist and educator Cecil McDonald, Jr., incorporating photomontages to subvert the racist representation of Black artists from history, on view through June 12, and What Time Is It?: A Portrait Project by Irina Zadov, a series of large-scale digital portraits of some of Chicago’s most influential community members projected on the facade of the Hyde Park Art Center through May 1.  


COVID-19-related safety protocols 

Hyde Park Art Center views its community’s safety as the number one priority and is utilizing the guidance from the City and State to inform its reopening procedures including the requiring of masks to be worn in the building at all times; instituting extra cleaning and disinfecting procedures; wide availability of hand sanitizer throughout the building; and the careful configuring of exhibition hours so as to help regulate the number of people and maintain proper social distance in the Art Center at one time.


Admission and hours

Exhibition admission is free, and advance registration is required. For latest exhibition hours and advance registration, visit www.hydeparkart.org.


About the Hyde Park Art Center

Hyde Park Art Center, at 5020 South Cornell Avenue on Chicago’s vibrant South Side, is a hub for contemporary arts in Chicago, serving as a gathering and production space for artists and the broader community to cultivate ideas, impact social change, and connect with new networks. Since its inception in 1939, Hyde Park Art Center has grown from a small collective of quirky artists to establishing a strong legacy of innovative development and emerging as a unique Chicago arts institution with social impact. The Art Center functions as an amplifier for today and tomorrow’s creative voices, providing the space to cultivate and create new work and connections. 

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