Phantoms in the Dirt

Museum of Contemporary Photography, 600 S Michigan Ave, Chicago, IL 60605

Phantoms in the Dirt

The sixteen artists in this exhibition present an array of physical remnants and enigmatic traces, ranging from cryptic objects to the marks of human activity in rugged landscapes. Searching for phantoms in the dirt, so to speak, their works reckon with the facts of matter, the nature of photographic imagery, and the forces (sometimes invisible) that leave their mark on our surroundings. In doing so, they are also considering how the visible and the tangible—or sometimes what our senses can't apprehend at all—shape our encounters with the world around us or generate mutable senses of meaning. Perhaps tellingly, their work is often both matter-of-fact and mysterious, an empirical approach even giving way to atmospheric or inscrutable results. At the same time, these works offer a range of outlooks on the possibilities of photography and sculpture. One medium would seem to favor the aloof image, the other matter itself; both, however, offer myriad ways to examine, or grapple with, the material world, whether at its most substantial or elusive. 

Guest curated by Karsten Lund (Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago).

Generous support for Phantoms in the Dirt  is provided by the Efroymson Family Fund and the Efroymson Contemporary Arts Fellowship program.  Additional support is made possible by the Contemporary Arts Council, the Headlands Center for the Arts, the Illinois Arts Council Agency, and the Danish Arts Foundation.

 

 

Upcoming Events

Opening Reception

Opening Reception

Join us for the opening reception of Birmingham, Alabama, 1963: Dawoud Bey/Black Star and Chicago Stories: Recent Works by Carlos Javier Ortiz and David Schalliol. ...

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Conversation: Dawoud Bey and Gaëlle Morel

Conversation: Dawoud Bey and Gaëlle Morel

Dawoud Bey will engage in a conversation with Gaëlle Morel, Exhibitions Curator at the Ryerson Image Centre, about the links between his Birmingham projects and ...

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Chicago Stories: Unpacking Segregation in Chicago, Then and Now

Chicago Stories: Unpacking Segregation in Chicago, Then and Now

Join the MoCP for a panel discussion exploring the segregated history of Chicago neighborhoods, in conjunction with the current exhibition Chicago Stories: Recent works by ...

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Lecture in Photography: Rebecca Senf

Lecture in Photography: Rebecca Senf

Rebecca Senf is the Chief Curator at the Center for Creative Photography and the Norton Family Curator of Photography, a joint appointment between the Center ...

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Tonika Johnson: Folded Map

Tonika Johnson: Folded Map

In conjunction with Columbia College Chicago’s Manifest Urban Arts Festival, the MoCP will host Columbia alum Tonika Johnson for a one-day presentation of Folded Map, ...

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Photos at Noon: Approaches to Documentary

Photos at Noon: Approaches to Documentary

Get to know the museum's collection with a series of public print viewings. MoCP's curator of academic programs and collections will lead a mini-course on ...

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Teen Night: CPS Lives

Teen Night: CPS Lives

Chicago teens are invited to engage in creative interactive workshops and reflect on themes of the exhibitions. This event is organized in partnership with CPS ...

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Photos at Noon: Chicago

Photos at Noon: Chicago

Get to know the museum's collection with a series of public print viewings. MoCP's curator of academic programs and collections will lead a mini-course on ...

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Past Events

Photos at Noon: Global Migration

Photos at Noon: Global Migration

Photos at Noon: Global Migration

MoCP

Get to know the museum's collection with this public print viewing led by the MoCP's curator of academic programs and collections. Drop in to learn ...

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MoCP Teen Summit

MoCP Teen Summit

MoCP Teen Summit

MoCP

Chicago teens are invited to reflect, engage, share, and create, in this multidisciplinary creative workshop exploring issues relating to the exhibition Stateless: Views of Global ...

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Lecture in Photography: Shimon Attie

Lecture in Photography: Shimon Attie

Lecture in Photography: Shimon Attie

Ferguson Hall

Artist Shimon Attie will present and discuss a selection of his projects across space and time. The presentation will touch briefly on early works, such ...

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Symposium

Symposium

Symposium

Stage Two, 618 S. Michigan Ave

This half-day event will feature exhibiting artists, activists, writers, and scholars who are engaged in issues surrounding refugee rights, global migration, and resettlement practices. Examining ...

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Opening Reception: Stateless: Views of Global Migration

Opening Reception: Stateless: Views of Global Migration

Opening Reception: Stateless: Views of Global Migration

MoCP

Join the MoCP for an opening reception for the exhibition Stateless: Views of Global Migration. ...

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