• “Art in Chicago, 1945–1995”

    Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago (MCA Chicago)

    In building the Sears Tower, Chicago—the city with broad shoulders that longs for a higher profile—may have realized its ideal self. Ideal not for boosting the city’s architectural stature, but because the Sears Tower looms over the World Trade Towers and every other building in New York City. The relation between art in Chicago and New York has always been similarly uneven, but here it is New York that casts the shadow.

    If the insecurities of Los Angelenos have been soothed of late by the success of a Lari Pittman, Chicago’s ego proves more vulnerable. Many critics outside that city

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  • John Torreano

    Jean Albano Gallery

    In his smallish constructions that dot the wall with a teasing, low-tech playfulness, John Torreano mines some of the formal and cultural possibilities hidden in the abstract shapes of costume jewelry and faux gemstones. These sculptures-cum-paintings reflect Torreano’s endless fascination with the volumetrics of the gems themselves—an octagonal face providing the apex for eight rhomboids, the rhomboid bases then forming the top edges of eight triangles, these triangles then tapering to a point. Again and again he revisits this shifting relation of 8 to 4 to 3 to I, and from plane to volume to

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