Madlener House
4 West Burton Place
Chicago, Illinois 60610
Telephone: 312.787.4071


What Kind of Architect Reads Playboy? 1953–1979
Beatriz Colomina
May 05, 2016, 6pm

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Please join us for a talk on May 5 by Beatriz Colomina, Graham grantee and curator of the exhibition, Playboy Architecture, 1953–1979, opening at the Elmhurst Art Museum on May 7.

Sex, architecture and design were inextricably intertwined in the pages of Playboy magazine from the very beginning. Architecture was not simply featured in the magazine but was its very mechanism. The sexual fantasies and the architectural fantasies were inseparable. Architecture turned out to be more seductive than the playmates. It became the ultimate playmate.

With its massive global circulation and sexualization of architecture, Playboy arguably had more influence on the dissemination of modern design than professional magazines, interiors magazines, and even institutions like the Museum of Modern Art.

Playboy architecture is all about the interior. The Playboy is an indoors man. The magazine was relentlessly obsessed with the interior and this interior turns out to be infinite. From the furniture to the clothes, the lighting, the music, the food, the drinks, the conversation, the jokes, the ideas, the art, the architecture, the smells, and even the way to move, to act… everything is provided. The magazine created a total work of art. When you open the pages of the magazine you are invited to dive in into this world without gaps, without cracks, without decay… an infinite perfected interior, a total work of art.

Beatriz Colomina is professor of architecture and founding director of the program in Media and Modernity at Princeton University. She has written extensively on questions of architecture, art, sexuality and media. Her books include Manifesto Architecture: The Ghost of Mies (Sternberg, 2014); Clip/Stamp/Fold: The Radical Architecture of Little Magazines 196X-197X (Actar, 2010); Domesticity at War (MIT Press, 2007); Privacy and Publicity: Modern Architecture as Mass Media (MIT Press, 1994); and Sexuality and Space (Princeton Architectural Press, 1992). Colomina has curated a series of exhibitions in Venice, Kassel, London, Frankfurt, Barcelona, Santiago de Chile, Bogota, Vancouver, Oslo, Lisbon, New York, Murcia, Montreal, Warsaw, Rotterdam, Maastricht and Vienna. She will co-curate, with Mark Wigley, the 2016 Istanbul Design Biennial. She was born in Madrid, studied architecture and completed her Ph.D. in Barcelona and lives in New York City.

This lecture is presented in partnership with the Elmhurst Art Museum.

Image:"The Playboy's Town House," Playboy, May 1962. Architect: R. Donald Jayce. Rendering by Humen Tan.



Candice Hopkins: Sounding the Margins
May 07, 2016, 3pm

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Please join us for a talk by curator and writer Candice Hopkins on Saturday, May 7.

Candice Hopkins
is based in Albuquerque, New Mexico. She has held curatorial positions at the IAIA Museum of Contemporary Native Arts, National Gallery of Canada, the Western Front and the Walter Phillips Gallery at the Banff Centre. Her writings on history, art, and vernacular architecture have been published by MIT Press, BlackDog Publishing, Revolver Press, New York University, the Fillip Review and the National Museum of the American Indian, among others. Hopkins has lectured widely including at the Witte de With, Tate Modern, Dakar Biennale, Tate Britain and the University of British Columbia. Hopkins was co-curator of the 2014 SITE Santa Fe biennial exhibition, "Unsettled Landscapes." In 2014 she received the Joan Lowndes award from the Canada Council for the Arts for excellence in critical and curatorial writing. She currently is a curatorial advisor for Documenta 14, opening in 2017.

The Graham Foundation is pleased to present this talk in partnership with the Department of Art Theory and Practice at Northwestern University.

This lecture is made possible by support from the Myers Foundations and the Jerrold Loebl Fund for the arts.

Image: Beau Dick, Tsonokwa Mask, 2007 Red cedar, horse hair and acrylic, 78.8 × 66.1 × 35.6 cm.Photo: National Gallery of Canada.



Opening Reception: The Flesh Is Yours, The Bones Are Ours
Michael Rakowitz
May 18, 2016, 6pm
Opening Reception

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Please join us for a reception and artist talk by Michael Rakowitz to celebrate the opening of our new exhibition, The Flesh Is Yours, The Bones Are Ours.

Wednesday, May 18
6-7pm: Talk by Michael Rakowitz
7-8:30pm: Opening Reception

Michael Rakowitz is an artist living and working in Chicago. He received his BFA in sculpture from Purchase College, SUNY, and his MS in visual studies from MIT. His work has appeared in venues worldwide, including dOCUMENTA 13, PS1, MoMA, MassMOCA, Castello di Rivoli, the 16th Sydney Biennale, the 10th Istanbul Biennial, Sharjah Biennial 8, the Tirana Biennale, the National Design Triennial at the Cooper-Hewitt, and Transmediale 05. Solo exhibitions include the Tate Modern in London, Lombard Freid Gallery in New York, Trafo Gallery in Budapest, and Kunstraum Innsbruck. Rakowitz is the recipient of a 2012 Tiffany Foundation Award; a 2008 Creative Capital Grant; a Sharjah Biennial Jury Award; a 2006 NYFA Fellowship Grant in Architecture and Environmental Structures; the 2003 Dena Foundation Award; and the 2002 Design 21 Grand Prix from UNESCO. His work features in major private and public collections, including the Museum of Modern Art, New York; Neue Galerie, Kassel, Germany; the Smart Museum of Art, Chicago; the Van Abbemuseum, Eindhoven, the Netherlands; the British Museum; the Kabul National Museum, Afghanistan; and UNESCO, Paris. Rakowitz is professor of art theory and practice at Northwestern University.


Image: Michael Rakowitz, "The Flesh Is Yours, The Bones Are Ours," 2015. Installation view, Galata Greek Primary School, 14th Istanbul Biennial. Photo by Sahir Ugur Eren.

For more information on the exhibition, The Flesh Is Yours, The Bones Are Ours, click here.



Architectural Narratives / Building Stories
Koldo Lus Arana
Jun 07, 2016, 6pm

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Koldo Lus Arana will discuss his recent research on the interactions between comics and architecture—both from a historical perspective and exploring current overlaps. Arana will explore the work of contemporary architects such as Jimenez Lai, Willem Jan Neutelings and many others who use comics and cartoons within their work, to the presence of architecture in comics such as those created by Chris Ware or François Schuiten. 

Koldo Lus Arana is an architect, illustrator and architecture scholar. He earned a Master in Design Studies from Harvard GSD in 2008, and a PhD from the University of Navarra in 2013 with the dissertation Futuropolis: Comics and the Transmediatic Construction of the City of the Future. His main lines of research deal with the interactions between architecture and media, and with architectural prospective. He currently teaches Theory and History of Architecture in the University of Zaragoza (Spain).

This lecture is presented in partnership with MAS Context. MAS Context is a quarterly journal that addresses issues that affect the urban context.




Angelo Plessas: Brotherhood and More
ATP Visiting Artist Talks
Apr 26, 2016, 6pm

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Angelo Plessas is an artist based in Athens. The focus of his work is to network the offline with the online in ways that make us understand aspects of both conditions, and to generate new ways of relating to both. His activities range widely—from performances to artist residencies; from self-publishing to interactive websites; from sculptures, to live-stream events and different educational projects. For the last four years, he has organized annual, weeklong gatherings of The Eternal Internet Brother/Sisterhood.

The Graham Foundation is pleased to present this talk in partnership with the Department of Art Theory and Practice at Northwestern University.

This lecture is made possible by support from the Myers Foundations and the Jerrold Loebl Fund for the arts.

Image: Eternal Internet Brother/Sisterhood 1-3, Angelo Plessas, 2015, Courtesy the Breeder, Athens.


Unless otherwise noted,
all events take place at:

Madlener House
4 West Burton Place, Chicago
The Graham Foundation galleries are open Wednesday through Saturday from 11-6PM.

Directions to Madlener House


Events are held in the ballroom on the third floor which is only accessible by stairs.
The first floor of the Madlener House is accessible via an outdoor lift. Please call 312.787.4071 to make arrangements.