from Chicago Tribune:
'Heads on Poles'at Western Exhibitions
By Lauren Viera, Tribune reporter
February 11, 2011Rare is the group show that is fun in concept and successful in illustrating that concept with fresh, exciting work that, when placed in a room together, stirs a dialogue of color, texture and community.
"Heads on Poles" does all this and more.
Curated by Paul Nudd and Scott Wolniak, the group show at Western Exhibitions invited some 60 artists (a number that's borderline laughable for Western's square footage) to participate in illustrating the simple, savage icon of a head mounted on a stick via three- and two-dimensional works. Approximately 40 artists made physical heads on poles, from Smokey the Bear on a log to a creatively genius cat scratch-post, and another 20 or so created print matter for a companion publication.
There are too many successful sculptures to name, though Wisconsinite John Riepenhoff's "My Old Head" wins for creepiest and most polite (a faux blood-stained notebook paper at the base of the pole that's attached to a terribly humanistic head reads, "I hope you find my old head useful"), and Detroit-based Ryan Standfest's "The Werkwelt Apparatus (a model)" is a thoughtful, smartly crafted device likely to stand the test of time.
Instead of feeling crowded, the space feels festive.
"Heads on Poles" at Western Exhibitions, 119 N. Peoria St., 312-480-8390; westernexhibitions.com. Through Feb. 19.