summer forum

for Inquiry & Exchange

Hearth + Shelf: NIGHT LIBRARY w/ Ika Knezevic

Join us for a talk on collected, borrowed and stolen books on orgy, satan, murder and fashion belonging to artist Ika Knezevic.


Currently visiting artist and lecturer in Northwestern University's Department of Art Theory & Practice, Ika Knezevic is a Chicago, USA and Belgrade, Serbia based artist working in various visual art formats, music, and architecture. 


This event will take place on April 23rd at 7:30 pm. Seats are limited, please RSVP through A ten-dollar donation to Summer Forum is suggested. 


Hearth + Shelf is an event series where we ask Chicagoans to open up their homes to talk about their personal book collections. 

WIN WIN WIN at our benefit!

BUY YOUR PRE-SALE TICKETS NOW FOR $25 ($35 at the door). 

We'll see you on Saturday! The big night is only three days away! In addition to all the amazing pieces already donated by artists to the auction (yes, open for bidding now!) for this year's fundraiser, we have an unmissable variety raffle prizes from some other truly generous folks. Remember, your entry also includes a free raffle ticket, food by E-Dogz and unlimited drinks all night. Get there early and catch our cocktail hour from 7-9, check out the art, and enter our raffle for a chance to win. Not pictured in this post are a stuffed alpaca family from ODLCO, a leather pouch from Eye of the Sun, a signed double LP and exhibition catalogue from Jason Lazarus, a bouquet by Field and Florist, a gold Homo Floresiensis skull from iamhome, jewlery from Cities in Dust, posters from Cole Wilson, and a gift card to TUSK. Additional tickets can be purchased at the event, $3 for 1, $5 for 2.

Snoop some of these prizes:

Gradient Puzzle by Bryce Wilner
Small edition of 24 × 18", 500-piece Color Gradient Puzzle, designed by Chicago based Bryce Wilner. The colors in this puzzle have been arranged so to approximate the variation between blue and red, and to suggest that there exists no precise point on the chromatic scale at which one color becomes another. For these reasons, the puzzle can be considered complete when its pieces are disassembled and mixed together in the box.


True Essential Oil from Sparrow for Everyone
Sparrow True Essential Oil came from a quest to find something real, something healing and something for everyone. It comes from the belief that one product can be a foundation for healing. Our blend of 12 oils, all derived from flowers, nuts, and seeds is free of any man-made ingredients." 12 oz. bottle of this magic stuff from Sparrow in Logan Square. Use it in your hair, on your skin, in the bath, after you shave.


Martine Syms/Paul Cowan Split LP from Mixed Media Recording
Mixed Media is pleased to announce its first release, a split LP with Los Angeles-based artist Martine Syms and Milwaukee-based artist Paul Cowan. Syms presents a spoken word table read titled Most Days, and Cowan presents an original ambient musical score with accompanying text.


Family Level Membership from the Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago

Includes all Basic Individual-level benefits for two people plus free admission for children under the age of 18 as well as two additional one-time-use guest passes for your friends (four passes total—a $48 value) and a free yearlong subscription to Dwell Magazine (10 issues). 


Sm. Mirrored Copper Triangle Necklace and Bangle from Shikama
Shikama jewelry is designed by Chicago based artist Sarah Shikama. Named after her mother's maiden name, Shikama translates into "deer," an animal considered sacred in Japan. The collections are made with an emphasis on simple shapes and design. Combining dead stock vintage findings and sculpted metals, each step of production is handmade in Sarah's Chicago studio and produced in limited numbered editions.


LIVE IN JERUSALEM 2010 by Michael Rakowitz
LIVE IN JERUSALEM 2010 is a deluxe gatefold vinyl LP documenting a concert on the roof of the Swedish Christian Study Centre near Jaffa Gate in Jerusalem’s Old City on October 7, 2010. The culmination of Rakowitz’s contribution to The Jerusalem Show, the performance featured celebrated Palestinian rock band Sabreen playing five Arabic inflected Beatles songs, selected and ordered to form a kind of poem about collaboration and collapse, and about dreams that cannot be deferred indefinitely.


Parson's Chicken and Fish

A gift card to Parson's Chicken and Fish, located at 2952 W Armitage Ave, Chicago, IL 60647.


Coffee Package from Kindred Coffee
A local coffee roaster committed to greater possibilities of deliciousness, sustainability, and fairness in pursuit of unique, carefully roasted coffees.

Donate Today! Kickstarter 2014 Now Live

Summer Forum 2014 Kickstarter is now live! Support us anytime between now and April 24. Rewards include playing cards and tote bags designed by our 2014 design collaborator Ria Roberts; a copy of the next edition of Dilettante; ad space in Dilettante; artist books by Arend DeGruyter-Helfer, Karolina Gnatowski, Sam Lipp & Luis Miguel Bendaña, Rachel Niffenegger, Aay Preston-Myint, or Chris Roeleveld; signed, original prints by Chris Johanson; a donor dinner in Chicago,New York, or Los Angeles; and the opportunity to sponsor one of our invited guest lectures or discussion sessions. Thank you in advance for your support!



Summer Forum 2014 Fundraiser & Art Auction

Please join us at Tusk in Logan Square on Saturday, April 5 from 7-11 pm for the Summer Forum 2014 fundraiser and benefit auction. Presale tickets are $25 online until the day before or $35 at the door and include unlimited food provided by E-Dogz, drinks, and a raffle ticket. Presale tickets can be purchased HERE. Advanced online bidding begins March 31, stay tuned for more info.

Featuring artworks by: Lauren Anderson, Jason Benson, Sean Joseph Patrick Carney, Dana Carter, Alex Chitty, Paul Cowan, Chelsea Culp, Joel Dean, Austin Eddy, Carson Fisk-Vittori, Ben Foch, Aron Gent, Danny Giles, Magalie Guerin, Andrew Holmquist, Michael Hunter, Josh Ippel, Jenny Kendler, Sofia Leiby, Jordan Martins, Miami Dutch, Holly Murkerson, Tim Nickodemus, Heidi Norton, Kate Ruggeri, Carrie Schneider, Kasia Smith, and Jeremy Tinder.

Our second edition of conceptual book covers for a selection of our 2014 Summer Forum texts include contributions by Arend DeGruyter-Helfer, Karolina Gnatowski, Sam Lipp and Luis Miguel Bendaña, Rachel Niffenegger, Aay Preston-Myint, and Chris Roeleveld.

Raffle prizes include donations from Bryce Wilner, Cities in Dust, Eye of the Sun, Field and Florist, Jason Lazarus, Kindred Coffee, Michael Rakowitz, ODLCO, Sarah Shikama, Sparrow for Everyone, and Tusk.

Invite your friends, we hope to see you there!

Summer Forum 2014: Now Available

Summer Forum for Inquiry + Exchange 2014 Residency information and applications are now available. Take a look.

This year's residency will take place between July 6 - 13 in Joshua Tree, CA and the theme is "Networks of Belonging: Geographies, Citizenries and the Masses." Invited guests include Gina Apostol, Benjamin H. Bratton, Lisa Guenther and Felicity D. Scott. Applications are due by April 25, 2014. Submit yours today.

Hearth + Shelf: Spectacular Vernacular w/ Tim Parson & Jess Charlesworth

Join British husband and wife designers and SAIC faculty Tim Parsons and Jessica Charlesworth at their home studio for an evening of function and fiction. Tim reveals his helpless Italophilia through monographs of celebrated design heroes with a brief foray into the films of French comedy genius Jacques Tati (Mon OnclePlaytime). From these poets of the everyday, Jess leads us into the esoteric world of speculative futures. Inspiration for her practice creating design fictions, her shelf reveals intriguing titles such as How to Live Safely in a Science Fiction Universe by Charles Yu alongside classics from Arthur C Clarke and Ray Bradbury.

Tim Parsons and Jessica Charlesworth are a Chicago-based British husband and wife team working in the realm of experimental and speculative object making. Trained as designers, Parsons and Charlesworth’s work intermingles influences from product design, fiction, science and the arts, exploring the practical, rhetorical and narrative opportunities of designed objects.

This event will take place on March 1st at 5PM. Seats are limited, please RSVP through

Hearth + Shelf is an event series where we ask Chicagoans to open up their homes to talk about their personal book collections.