Rosemary Meza-DesPlas

“Heaviness, Hardship, Heft”  Opening  Fri.  Sept 1,  6-9pm

Gender-based burdens resonate in images populating mass media, social media and art history. In early world history lack of transportation led to women literally being the conveyors of goods; conversely, the 21st century finds women stagnant within burdensome roles despite feminist advancements. Within the societal stratification, images portray hardships – inclusive of poverty, violence and politics – carried by women. Weight hauled by women can have a palpable physical existence or take on a psychological shape of enormous proportions. Fluctuating states of poverty, violence and politics encumber women on a daily basis. Feminine onus is heightened by entrenched patriarchal institutions and reaches a crest during political unrest and instability.

Exhibition dates:     August 30 – Sept 23, 2017

Gallery hours:     Wed-Sat 12-6pm    Sunday 12-4pm


Visit Easy Fundraising Ideas



WE ARE MOVING!!  WE NEED YOUR SUPPORT THIS YEAR IN ORDER TO KEEP THIS SPECIAL PLACE GOING.  Please read on… and help support ARC’s continued existence!


ARC Gallery & Educational Foundation has been an integral part of the Chicago art community for almost 45 years! 

While we have always survived on the commitment of our members and friends(!), this year we are facing significant challenges. The 25% increase in this year’s rent — now coupled with the necessity to move in 2018 to a new exciting space — means we must mount a capital campaign to raise $30,000. 

ARC today remains true to its original mission to adhere to a high standard of quality in all its exhibitions, to support and show the work of talented and emerging artists, and to mentor fellow female artists/students.

Although we show the work of all artists, whatever their gender, we bring a uniquely female perspective to the running of this gallery — cognizant always of the challenges many artists face to get their work shown in a professional space and mindful of the value of support.

Also, as part of our mission, we subsidize the cost of mounting individual shows for talented emerging artists. Our juried shows attract both national and international submissions; and many past members of ARC have gone on to further critical recognition. Currently we are expanding our programming to include more performance and video work; and we are reaching out to mentor younger artists via our “Launch Member” program.

ARC remains a unique gallery space in Chicago. We would love to have your support! 



“SHOUT”  Opening  Fri.  July 21,  6-9pm

This exhibition brings together a host of voices, culminating in a collaborative SHOUT! for justice, democracy, and equality.

As political passions sweep the country, public expression has taken the form of marching, petitioning, donating, writing to congress…. While ARC Gallery encourages all these voices of outrage and resistance, the gallery is particularly committed to supporting creative expression as a vital and essential avenue of engagement as well.


Sobia Ahmad
Jenny Balisle
Heather Beardsley
Lisa Bjornstad
Laurie Borggreve
Jordan Ferranto
Nancy Fritz
Francesca Gagliano
Stano Grezdo
Karen Hanken
Michael Hubbard
Lyle Kleinhans
Ryan Lewis
Song Park
Monica Quist
Caison Wang
Margi Weir
Yiqing Zhang


PATRICIA NGUYEN was born and raised in Chicago, Illinois. She is a performance artist, educator, and scholar. She has performed at the NHA SAN collective in Vietnam, the Mission Cultural Center in San Francisco, Links Hall, Oberlin College, Northwestern University, University of Massachusetts Boston, Prague Quadrennial, and Museum of Memory and Human Rights in Chile.

Patricia has worked in the United States, Vietnam, Brazil, and the Philippines with over 15 years experience working in arts education, community development, and human rights. She has facilitated training and workshops with The Fulbright Program, American Center at the U.S. Embassy in Vietnam, Jane Addams Hull House, Christina Noble Foundation, Social Workers Association in Vietnam, Vietnamese American Young Leadership Association in New Orleans, Asian Human Services, and 96 Acres on issues ranging from forced migration, mental health, youth empowerment, and language access. Patricia has published work in the Harvard Kennedy School’s Asian American Policy Review and The Methuen Drama Anthology of Modern Asian Plays edited by Siyuan Liu and Kevin J. Wetmore, Jr. She is the co-founder and executive director of Axis Lab, a community-centered art, food, and design studio in Chicago.


Exhibition dates:     July 16 – August 12, 2017

Gallery hours:     Wed-Sat 12-6pm    Sunday 12-4pm

Sela Koren

“Drawings”  Opening  Fri.  June 23,  6-9pm

Israeli artist Sela Koren presents a series of drawings representing a woman, a man, and a child (from infancy to six years old) as well as self-portraits.  Among some drawings are Hebrew letters, made with the artist’s left hand, very early in the morning while working with his father on the family farm.  These were drawn this way to represent an ancient anger since drawing with the left hand develops the right hemisphere, where mercy and forgiveness are found.  Several drawings include text of the insights the artist had while in the process of creating the work.  The last group of drawings are of crows and cows, meant to represent the outside world.


Exhibition dates:     June 23 – July 15, 2017

Gallery hours:     Wed-Sat 12-6pm    Sunday 12-4pm

Cynthia Vaicunas

“Clusters and Interruptions”  Opening  Fri.  June 23,  6-9pm

Inspired by encounters of all sorts, everywhere – visual, musical, gatherings and disassembling of people, nature and art – these new paintings by Cynthia Vaicunas use positioning of shapes and marks to investigate what happens at their convergence.

By intersecting and overlapping, new shapes begin to form. As the background becomes interrupted additional shapes appear out of negative space. This is sometimes carefully planned and at other times the element of chance comes into play.

Engaging the eye and playing with the space on the canvas invites the viewer to participate in exploration within the rectangle. Her muted palette allows still clusters to join and hover. Once again chance comes into play with her use of premixed random colors.  Her bright palette encourages movement and flow.

Opening:     Friday June 23 from 6-9pm

Exhibition dates:     June 23 – July 15, 2017

Gallery hours:     Wed-Sat 12-6pm    Sunday 12-4pm

Cheri Reif Naselli

“Deconstruction”  Opening  Fri.  June 23,  6-9pm

As a consequence of burgeoning wealth disparity and a misguided belief that money somehow constitutes “free speech” we are now engaged in a great “Deconstruction” of established public institutions, societal norms and, even, accepted science and history.

This installation exhibits the intentional misrepresentation of facts and the efforts to misinform and misdirect a trusting public by a consortium of powerful wealth interests and their willing cohorts in politics, academia and the media.


Opening:     Friday June 23 from 6-9pm

Exhibition dates:     June 23 – July 15, 2017

Gallery hours:     Wed-Sat 12-6pm    Sunday 12-4pm

After Supper Visions

“After Supper Visions ”  Opening  Fri.  May 26,  6-9pm

After Supper Visions is a self-supporting photography enterprise for the poor, homeless and near homeless of Chicago. Five nights a week the needy are supper guests at Catholic Charities at 721 North LaSalle Street. On Tuesdays, those who wish to participate in the program are given cameras, disposable or inexpensive digital, and instruction by professional photographers. When the cameras are returned, guest-photographers choose 3 or 4 images to be printed and included in an exhibition for the public.

The motto for the program is that it “Develops Film, Talent, and Hope.” Observations and conversations with supper-guest photographers provide a picture of people who are able, through the program, to engage with volunteers and one another in a meaningful way and to find a sense of self through their photographic endeavors. It provides an objective intellectual opportunity beyond their efforts just to survive. One guest states that photography makes them feel as though that they are worth something. Another tells that he has two precious possessions-his blood-sugar monitoring kit and his camera. While yet another talks about trying to capture something of experiential homelessness and being able to see the glory and grace of everyday existence.

Proceeds from the sale of the work supports both the program and the guest photographers personally. Please note: This is a non-religious endeavor.  Catholic Charities and After Supper Visions supports all races and religions.





Opening:     Friday May 26 from 6-9pm

Exhibition dates:     May 24 – June 17, 2017

Gallery hours:     Wed-Sat 12-6pm    Sunday 12-4pm

Pauline Kochanski

“The Past Is Still With Us”  Opening  Fri.  May 26,  6-9pm

The exhibition “The Past is Still With Us” is a new installation by Chicago-based artist Pauline Kochanski.  The installation is based on Ms. Kochanski’s interest in exploring ways to aesthetically express her  response to her family’s history of the European Holocaust of World War II.  “The experience of my parents has haunted me and I have been exploring ways to express my emotional response.”

This installation breaks new ground for the artist, by inviting viewers to connect to the exhibition as participants.  Viewers are encouraged to interact and touch materials in the exhibition.  Viewers become participants.




Opening:     Friday May 26 from 6-9pm

Exhibition dates:     May 24 – June 17, 2017

Gallery hours:     Wed-Sat 12-6pm    Sunday 12-4pm

Chiyeko Yuki

“Chiyeko Yuki: New Work”  Opening  Fri.  May 26,  6-9pm

Tokyo-based artist Chiyeko Yuki returns to ARC Gallery with her newest creations. Yuki’s work is subtle, fragile, thoughtful and graceful. These small pieces of art work are Chiyeko Yuki’s everyday “journals”. They are Yuki’s way-of-life shown in light and shadow.

The repeated layering of shapes is the passing of every regular day.
The lights and shadows in each shape help tell stories about the inner life of the artist and bring to mind memories.

Light and shadow refer to the thoughts Yuki creates while she puts herself in each composition. The compositions have no direct association with any particular visible experience, but in them one recognizes the principle and passion of Yuki’s way of life.

The routines of every day are there in cruel ways and at times in gentle ways. Yuki creates art with internal freedom and without need to confirm or violate what is possible in her familiar precious life.

Art can scoop up not only light but also shadow. Art can shed light on the shadows in life which we, human beings, often try to bury beyond memory.

Opening:     Friday May 26 from 6-9pm

Exhibition dates:     May 24 – June 17, 2017

Gallery hours:     Wed-Sat 12-6pm    Sunday 12-4pm