art curatorial collective

167 N Green
Shapack Partners

Johalla Projects is excited to announce the completion of a large-scale curatorial installation at 167 Green Street, located in Chicago’s Fulton Market. Johalla Projects collaborated with Shapack Partners, Focus and Gensler to conceptualize the acquisition of an exciting art collection as well as large-scale art installations and projects.  

When developing the art collection, Johalla Projects highlighted Chicago-based artists with an emphasis on inclusivity. Artistic voices come from a range of cultures, races, genders, and backgrounds and together form a constellation of creative innovation speaking for the pulse of contemporary art.  The collection also includes a historic through-line with vintage lithographs of Alexander Calder’s Braniff Airlines posters from the 1970s and works by Alexander Calder and Ellsworth Kelly from the French art magazine “Derrière le Miroir.” Blending vintage with contemporary, European with American, harmonizes the collection with the architecture’s cohesive mix of modern design and contemporary style.

Engaging with the building’s exterior facade, Johalla Projects collaborated with artist Cody Hudson to create a modern public mural that inlays into passerby’s daily life. Hudson’s practice blends geometric forms with organic shapes to create a visual language that embraces juxtaposition and multiplicities. Reflecting on the history of public murals in the Fulton, Hudson adds subtle modernism to the scene with his abstract composition. With crisp lines and geometric forms, the mural calls to mind mid-century artworks and installations with references to timeless paintings from 50s-70s artists like Frank Stella and Stuart Davis.

Theaster Gates
Mama’s Milk

Johalla Projects continued our over seven-year-long partnership with Shapack Partners by working together on the large-scale public art installation of 167 Green, Chicago, IL. On the ground floor common area of the building, we installed Mama’s Milk, a large-scale neon sculpture by Theaster Gates. Gates acquired the sign from the Rothschild family in 2018, restored it, and added an intervention in white neon that reads “MAMA’S MILK” alluding to the pervasiveness of liquor stores in impoverished minority neighborhoods. The neon sculpture is installed in the public entry space of the building and is available for all to see.