Installation by Jason Lazarus
November 19, 2022 - Jan 21, 2023,
Randolph Street Windows, Chicago Cultural Center
ENCOUNTER-- was an open-call exhibition organized by artist Jason Lazarus--featuring small handmade “drawings” by current or former Chicago artist-residents visualizing a TRANSFORMATIVE encounter with a single artwork they had somewhere in Chicago while living in the city. The exhibition asks artists to acknowledge a work (and its maker) who helped ‘us see what is possible, urgent, relevant, and liberating.’ The participating artist list, which continues to expand daily as submissions are received, can be found HERE. The exhibition will continue to seek submissions during its run, which will be added to the evolving installation in the Randolph St. window over the course of the exhibition. There are plans to publish a book version of the project in the months after the exhibition closes. Having worked as an artist for many years in Chicago (2003-2015) and now headquartered in Tampa, Florida, Lazarus writes on the idea of the exhibition: After years of distance from formative art experiences, I realized that although initially physical, an Encounter radiates internal waves of teaching and understanding that unfurls within us over long periods of time. The most powerful encounters, even when we don’t understand them initially, are an engagement with integrity–we feel new rules, new agency, and new forms of liberation. We carry encounters with us for years, and often in times of need, they carry us. So why ENCOUNTER now? Artists and art audiences are looking for meaning when ‘the future,’ as philosopher Bifo Berardi proposes ‘is over…its last vestiges were squandered in the schemes of a heavily futurized financial capitalism.’ Where else might we find integrity than in each other?




About Jason Lazarus
Jason Lazarus is an artist exploring vision and visibility. His work includes a range of fluid methodologies that seek new approaches of inquiry, embodiment, and bearing witness through both individual and collective research. Currently, Lazarus is an Assistant Professor of Art and Art History at the University of South Florida, he is also Co-director of Coco Hunday, an artist-run exhibition space in Tampa, FL; Director, PDF-OBJECTS; Cofounder of #firstdayfirstimage; and Co-founder of Chicago Artist Writers. He has shown internationally, including with SF MOMA, Art Institute of Chicago, MASS MoCA, and MCA Chicago