9 Must-Visit Chicago Art Galleries

September 3, 2020

An internationally recognized art and design hub, Chicago has so much to offer, with the art community almost always buzzing with new exhibits and presentations. The city has incredible museums that you need to cross off your bucket list, including DePaul’s Art MuseumThe Art Institute of Chicago, the Museum of Contemporary Art and the National Museum of Mexican Art.

Over the years, a number of Chicago neighborhoods have blossomed into art districts, with an abundance of galleries ranging from fun, experimental studios to museum-like spaces.

Here are the Chicago art galleries that you simply must check out!

Featured image: Corbett vs Dempsey, the view of Christopher Wool exhibition, via Corbett vs Dempsey

Vertical Gallery

Located in the Ukrainian Village neighborhood, Vertical Gallery is Chicago's premier urban-contemporary gallery. Founded in 2013, it has established a reputation for its consistent programming of significant emerging and established local, national and international artists.

Their main focus is on work influenced by street art, urban environments, graffiti, pop culture, graphic design and illustration. Their roster includes Anthony Lister, Ben Frost, Blek le Rat, David de la Mano, and Herakut, among others.

Featured images: Vertical Gallery, An Exhibition Opening.

Kavi Gupta Gallery

Established in 2002, Kavi Gupta Gallery focuses on presenting exhibitions of international emerging and mid-career artists in all media. They have received enormous popular and critical responses for their curatorially-focused, project-based and ambitious and innovative programming.

Within its two permanent gallery locations, the gallery hosts more than a dozen museum-quality exhibitions each year, while its publishing imprint, Kavi Gupta Editions, produces quality artist books and catalogs. The gallery represents artists such as Wadsworth JarrellMary Sibande, and Mickalene Thomas, among others.

Featured image: Kavi Gupta Gallery, The view of CAN YOU FEEL IT by Jeffrey Gibson.

Stephen Daiter Gallery

If you are interested in photography, Stephen Daiter Gallery is a place to go. It offers fine and vintage examples of important classic American and European photography from the 20th century, specializing in avant-garde, experimental and documentary/photojournalism.

Their selection includes the Chicago School of Design, the Bauhaus, the Photo League, and the André Kertész Estate. Among represented artists are Dawoud Bey, Elliott Erwitt, Susan Meiselas, Martin Parr, and Alex Webb.

Featured image: Stephen Daiter Gallery, via Singulart

Zolla/Lieberman Gallery

First opening its doors in 1976, Zolla/Lieberman Gallery founded the area that is now known as the River North Gallery District.

Now located at 325 W. Huron Street, the gallery embraces a wide range of genres and artists, offering a variety of work. You can see works from artists such as Deborah Butterfield, John Fraser, David Lozano, and Stephen DeStaebler, among others.

Featured image: Zolla / Lieberman Gallery, view of In/scription group show, via Zolla / Lieberman Gallery.

Aspect / Ratio

Founded in 2012, Aspect/Ratio is a contemporary gallery that showcases an international cast of contemporary artists, including local visual artist Nick Albertson, New York-based videographer Casilda Sánchez and Cuban conceptual artist Alejandro Figueredo Díaz-Perera.

Their represented artists have been exhibited internationally at many major institutions, including the Museum of Modern Art, the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, and the Whitney Museum of American Art.

Featured image: Aspect / Ratio, the View of Solid Echoes by Jean Alexander Frater, Nick Albertson exhibition, via Artsland.

Monique Meloche Gallery

Monique Meloche Gallery built its reputation on spotting young talent that others overlooked. The gallery worked with Amy Sherald long before the artist painted Michelle Obama's official portrait.

Founded in 2000, the gallery moved to its current location in the West Town arts district in 2018. The gallery is celebrated for its conceptually challenging installations, with an emphasis on curatorial and institutional outreach. Roster artists include Rashid Johnson, Candida Alvarez, Ben Murray, Cheryl Pope, and Amy Sherald.

Featured image: Monique Meloche, the view of Restrain by Brendan Fernandes, via Monique Melonche.

Rhona Hoffman Gallery

Founded originally as Young Hoffman Gallery in 1976, Rhona Hoffman Gallery has launched many of emerging artists’ careers, being one of the first galleries to offer exhibitions to women artists including Cindy Sherman, Barbara Kruger, Jenny Holzer, and Sylvia Plimack Mangold.

They specialize in international contemporary art in all medias, and art that is conceptually, formally, or socio-politically based. Among the artists the gallery has exhibited and/or continues to exhibit are Vito Acconci, Leon Golub, Robert Heinecken, Jenny Holzer, Barbara Kruger, Sol LeWitt, Robert Ryman, Lorna Simpson, Nancy Spero, Richard Tuttle, Carrie Mae Weems, and Kehinde Wiley.

Featured image: Rhona Hoffman Gallery, the view of Jacob Hashimoto exhibition

Richard Gray

Working since 1963, Richard Gray is dedicated to fostering the development of historically important artist careers and to building outstanding art collections.

Devoted to both contemporary and modern art, the gallery represented a number of celebrated artists, including Magdalena Abakanowicz, Bethany Collins, Jim Dine, Jean Dubuffet, David Hockney, Alex Katz, Joan Miró, Pablo Picasso, Jaume Plensa and Evelyn Statsinger.

Featured image: Richard Gray Gallery, the view of Richard Gray Gallery Every Square Needs a Circle by Theaster Gates, via Richard Gray Gallery.

Corbett vs Dempsey

Founded in 2004, Corbett vs Dempsey has been committed both to the historical and contemporary legacy of Chicago art, and to the task of presenting major international artists in the Windy City.

Since its inception, the gallery has been involved in an intensive exploration of the well-known and the unseen in Chicago, bringing solos exhibitions by artists such as Richard Artschwager, Albert Oehlen, Joyce Pensato, Terry Winters, and Christopher Wool, continuing to represent some of them.

Featured image: Corbett vs Dempsey, the view of Christopher Wool exhibition, via Corbett vs Dempsey.

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Kavi Gupta Gallery

Chicago, United States of America


Chicago, United States of America