Art of Illinois

  • Illinois Executive Mansion Association

Rudolph Weisenborn, Chicago, 1928. Oil on canvas, 48 × 80 inches. Illinois State Museum.

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Art of Illinois, on view in the Illinois Governor’s Mansion from July 14–December 31, 2018, examined the creative achievement of fine and applied arts practitioners working in Illinois from the mid-nineteenth century to the present. Exhibiting over 100 significant examples from the fields of painting, sculpture, furniture, metalwork, ceramics, and glass, the Art of Illinois emphasized the historical depth and richness of the state’s artistic legacy, the diversity of Chicago’s and Illinois’ creative community, and how the places and people of Illinois—especially those in Chicago—have inspired artists. Drawn from collections statewide, the exhibited works exemplify the variety of museums, historic sites, and other settings in which the state’s and Chicago’s art and design heritage are preserved and presented.

As a companion to Art of Illinos, the Governor’s Mansion offers a digital exhibition featuring original essays by curators Wendy Greenhouse and Sharon Darling, historic images of Illinois and Chicago artists and designers, and a full digital library of works displayed in Art of Illinois. Like the physical exhibition, the online companion contributes new insights to Chicago’s art and design history, showcasing Chicago-created decorative and fine arts across various media that are rarely considered in a single presentation.