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Woman Made Gallery (WMG) seeks entries for the Absurdity: In Dada We Trust exhibition, juried by WMG co-founders, Kelly P Hensen and Beate Minkovski and on display from July 22 to August 19, 2023.

Absurdity, In Dada We Trust, is inspired by a collaboration between The Art Center Highland Park, Chicago Women's Caucus for Art, and Stola Contemporary Art and in honor of artist Helene Romer Smith who died in March 2022. 

When the world goes mad, the arts go Dada.

In the US and across the globe, bullies have been applauded and emboldened to share self-serving rhetoric of nationalism and to act out sanctioned racism. 

Women's rights are being set back 50 years, and the LGBTQ community is dangling by a thread as individual rights are regulated but assault weapons are not. Social media has hijacked news and the term "alternate set of facts" has become the norm, no longer just the brunt of jokes. 

For artists, it is a clear call to look to the past for guidance and take a stand. How? In a word: Dadaism. Created as a reaction to the absurdity of war and the propaganda of WWI, Dadaism was the reaction of a group of artists from another time in history when the world was on the brink of madness. That is why Woman Made Gallery is joining this collaboration in building a coalition to fight back against the current trend toward insanity. 

Exhibition Description:
WMG is inviting women and non-binary artists whose work addresses the theme of Absurdity: a world on the brink of madness to submit images of up to three works created in any medium that have not been previously exhibited at WMG. Please address the theme of this exhibition in your artist statement. The exhibition will be held at Woman Made Gallery, located in the Pilsen neighborhood at 2150 S. Canalport Ave., Chicago, IL 60608.

About the Jurors: Kelly P. Hensen and Beate Minkovski
Kelly and Beate are artists who established Woman Made Gallery in 1992. Their friendship and collaboration started at Northeastern Illinois University where they created art for their Senior Show, "Manmade Women." The two women rented a storefront in Chicago's Ravenswood neighborhood and that is how Woman Made Gallery began. Now, 30 years later, the organization is still going strong, having shown the work of more than 9,000 women and non-binary artists in around 440 exhibitions. Over the years both Beate and Kelly have juried exhibitions at WMG, served on its board of directors and volunteered their services in different capacities. Beate was WMG's executive director through December 2014 and continues to be active in shaping the organization. 

Exhibition Dates: July 22 – August 19, 2023
Opening Reception: Saturday, July 22 at 4-7 PM CST

Artist Walkthrough: Saturday, August 19, 2023 from 2 to 4 PM CST

First Entry Due Date: May 27, 2023, 11:59 PM CST
Extended Due Date (fee increase to $35): June 3, 2023, 11:59 PM CST
Notification: June 10, 2023

Entry Fee
Entry Fee *The entry fee is $30 until the first deadline. The entry fee will then increase to $35 per entry. Each entry requires a minimum of one artwork, though up to three artworks may be considered per submission. Entry fees are non-refundable.

Members at the Enhanced Artist Level ($100) and above receive one free entry annually. Please email general@womanmade.org to receive your one-time code for free entry redemption.

WMG offers up to 30 fee waivers per exhibition. To acknowledge the historic inequities of wealth distribution, they are mainly reserved for ALAANA/BIPOC and/or LGBTQIA+. If you require a fee waiver simply email us explaining your need and we will assist you. Please email WMG at general@womanmade.org to request a fee-waiver. 

Woman Made Gallery is a space for women and nonbinary artists, including trans women and femme/feminine-identifying genderqueer artists. We welcome art from women and non-binary artists from our local community, regionally based, and around the world. 

Due to wall size restrictions, artworks must be no larger than 6’ horizontally and under 75 pounds in weight, unless delivered to and picked up from our 4th floor gallery by the artist. Artists may be additionally responsible for the installation of oversized works. 

New media artworks are eligible. To be considered, artists must submit a sample .mp4 or URL under 10 mins for purposes of consideration. For exhibition, WMG requires a digital transfer (Google Drive, Vimeo downloads, WeTransfer) as well as a USB formatted in .mp4 file format delivered to the gallery. WMG can provide a limited number of screens and projectors with basic speakers. All other new media needs are the responsibility of the artist.

Art Sales
Accepted work may be listed for sale or be not for sale (NFS). WMG will retain a 40% commission on sold works. Work remains the property of the artist until sold. Sold artworks shall remain in the exhibition until the end of the exhibition. Artists will be paid no later than 30 days after the close of the exhibit. Artists may donate any portion of their commission to WMG.

Terms of Exhibition
An artist contract with full terms of the exhibition will be administered at the time of acceptance notification.

Artists need to retrieve their work by the date noted in the artist contract or make alternate arrangements. WMG is unable to store work beyond the pick-up date. Artists may donate their art to WMG's fundraising efforts if unable to pick it up. WMG is happy to talk through preparations, offer advice, and recommend resources as requested.WMG offers up to 30 fee waivers per exhibition. To acknowledge the historic inequities of wealth distribution, they are mainly reserved for ALAANA/BIPOC and/or LGBTQIA+. Factors that result in an approved application include financial instability or low income status, student or recent graduate status, identification as ALAANA/BIPOC and/or LGBTQIA+, or a demonstrated need otherwise. If you require a fee waiver simply email us explaining your need and we will assist you.

We use Submittable to accept and review our submissions.