Commons Artist Project: blkHaUS studios

Commodification of Modernism


Curators: Folayemi Wilson and Norman Teague
Conversation Leads: Lynne and Ty McDaniel


This convening and exhibition consider how the potential for market value changes the ways we collect. What is it about modernism that has caught the imagination of design aficionados and collectors and elevated its aesthetic to elite, enduring status?

About the Quotes

Below are the collectors' words—unedited—about their objects.

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Person Name: David Brown Object Name: Blocks and Stripes, 2004 and Blocks and Stripes, 2003. Maker: Irene Williams Materials: Cotton blend, polyester double knot Dimensions: 0.5 × 12 × 10in. Provenance: Ordered book online

David Brown, West Loop
Blocks and Stripes, 2004 by Irene Williams

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Person Name: Eric Hotchkiss Object Name: Wu-Tang Forever Maker: Terrance Tatum Materials: Steel Dimensions: 5 × 1 x 5in. Provenance: Created at CVCA (formerly CVS High School)

Eric Hotchkiss, Englewood
Wu-Tang Forever by Terrance Tatum

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Person Name: Janet Dees Object Name: Appetizer dish Maker: unknown Materials: plastic Dimensions: 4.5 × 0.25 × 6.75in. Provenance: I bought it in a vintage store in Evanston, Illinois. I don’t know who made it or where it originated

Janet Dees, Rogers Park
Appetizer dish

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Person Name: Layne Jackson Object Name: Kiwanis International Paper Weight Maker: Unknown Materials: Glass, velvet, floss Dimensions: 3 × 3 x 3in. Provenance: It came from my grandfather’s closet. I know he was a lifelong member of the Kiwanis as well as other more secretive groups

Layne Jackson, Ukranian Village
Kiwanis International paperweight

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Person Name: Lindsay Austin Object Name: Robot Maker: Hans (made in China) Materials: Plastic Dimensions: 2 × 1 x 1in. Provenance: At a small market while traveling domestically (U.S.)

Lindsay Austin, Bronzeville

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Person Name: Lynne McDaniel Object Name: Pepper Grinder Maker: Dansk Materials: Tea Dimensions: 6 × 6 x 3in. Provenance: An Orange Moon Gallery

Lynne McDaniel, Kenwood
Pepper Grinder

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Person Name: Maggie Taft Object Name: Photographer Baseball Card Maker: Mike Mandel Materials: Paper Dimensions: 0 × 4 x 3in. Provenance: Ebay

Maggie Taft, Unknown
Photographer Baseball Card

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Person Name: Pablo Celorio Object Name: Chess Horse Maker: Mexicas from Teoti Materials: Onyx Dimensions: 2 × 0.5 × 1in. Provenance: An estate sale in Glenview from a family from Lithuania. They bought it on a trip to Mexico

Pablo Celorio, Bronzeville
Chess Horse

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Person Name: Renata Graw Object Name: Time to process Maker: Materials: Plastic, paper and battery Dimensions: 7 × 1 x 4in. Provenance: I made it from an IKEA clock and some left over plexi

Renata Graw, Bucktown
Time to Process

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Person Name: Zala Langston Object Name: Unknown Maker: Ivory Coast Materials: Wood Dimensions: 12 × 3 x 5in. Provenance: Black art plus

Zala Langston, Aubrun Gresham