I was my good fortune to have made the acquaintance of the director and assistant director of WMG about 2 years ago. The professional exhibitions and auxiliary activities that are offered to artists make WMG a rare resource for emerging, as well as established women artists. In a time of economic struggle they have been able to sustain a level of quality and professionalism that is amazing. Having also juried an exhibition at WMG, I was able to see first-hand their use of technology to streamline tasks, making better use of the resources they have. Most importantly, WMG has through their warmth and welcoming atmosphere, created a loyal and growing group of patrons and admirers. WMG is one of the true arts gems of Chicago!
WomanMade Gallery is a gallery/ exhibition space dedicated to furthering the work of women artists, often those who are invisible in the art world. The quality of exhibitions is generally outstanding, and are installed with great sensitivity to the placement of art work for maximum impact. I have participated in a number of juried exhibitions there, as well as a solo show, and found the staff extremely professional, warm, respectful, supportive, and helpful. This is not the usual treatment of artists in the "art world," where artists are often treated with a lack of respect. Also, I believe that their work is so important, giving voice to many women who do terrific work, but are not necessarily seen in the commercial gallery system.
I stumbled upon the Woman Made Gallery about 10 years ago when, recently retired, I had more time to visit interesting exhibits. Coincidentally I had started painting, but was quite timid about subjecting my work to a critical eye or forum. Woman Made Gallery not only had a very interesting exhibit, but the whole ambiance of the organization was appealing from its adherence to high artistic standards to its friendliness to its willingness to mentor. I began volunteering there and found a dedicated mentor not just in Beate Minkovski, the founding director, but from all members. It would not be an exaggeration to say that Woman Made has been my artistic home during all these years. I have worked on many aspects as a volunteer, and find that Woman Made does more with their funding than seems humanly possible. And, I have continued to grow as an artist because of the existence of Woman Made. High marks for this organization.
Woman Made is run by a great group of both seasoned and emerging artists & curators. They have group and solo exhibitions of work by women artists. I have had many positive experiences working with them as an artist, and as a viewer of art. I love that the gallery has recently hired some new young staff members with fresh ideas. I have noticed a lot innovations in the use of Woman Made's gallery space.
Woman Made Gallery has offered me the opportunity to see interesting juried exhibits; the opportunity to show my work in members' shows; small group discussions among artists sharing their thoughts on art. It is a welcoming, stimulating, and inviting environment.
I have been involved with Woman Made for almost 10 years as a visitor, vendor, donor and friend. They are a tremendous resource for womens art in Chicago. Their range is wide and they emmbrace many sorts of art and artists. Their events, open houses and galas are warm and welcoming and have opened my eyes to new artists and artisans. They are professionaly managed and I ahve seen great longevity in the volunteers and board members which speaks volumes to the executive director and the high level of operations and collaboration amongst the volunteers and staff. People stay invoved because it is a wonderful organization to be part of.