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Stephanie Cristello. Photo: Assaf Evron.

Stephanie Cristello Appointed Artistic Director of Expo Chicago

Expo Chicago announced today that Stephanie Cristello, editor in chief of the contemporary and modern art journal The Seen and the fair’s former director of programming, will assume the role of artistic director effective immediately. Cristello will oversee the exposition’s core programs and initiatives, including its dialogues panel program, site-specific installations, off-site exhibitions, and national and international partnerships.

“After six years with the organization, and the launch of numerous core programs, I look forward to being at the helm of expanding the legacy of an exposition whose mission reflects the strength of Chicago’s unique cultural and artistic context—as a site for leading challenging and rigorous discourse, presenting innovative platforms and initiating institutional collaborations within the global contemporary art field,” Cristello said in a statement.

Previously, Cristello served as a senior editor for ArtSlant and as a frequent contributor to numerous publications, including ArtReview, Elephant magazine, Frieze, and BOMB magazine. Among her recent curatorial projects was an exhibition presented at the DuSable Museum of African American History. The show, a collaboration with the Palais de Tokyo and the Institut Français, featured work by thirteen artists from the French and Chicago art scenes and coincided with the Chicago Architecture Biennial. Cristello also serves as the director and curator at Chicago Manual Style, a dual-format project space dedicated to thematic exhibitions and publishing.

Expo Chicago also named Kathleen Rapp, who has been with the fair since its inception in 2010, managing director of VIP relations and Jeff Rhodes managing director of operations and exhibitor relations. Commenting on the appointments, Expo Chicago president and director Tony Karman said: “The exposition prides itself on presenting critically acclaimed international programming and service in support of our exhibitors and visiting patrons, and I am extremely proud to be working with, and learning from, this extraordinary team.” 

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