View, through February 25. This first American museum presentation of the work of Chicago artist Julia Fish features a selection spanning her career. Fish's paintings examine the boundaries of abstraction by identifying the limitations of the static painted image. Renaissance Society; call 702-8670.
The Sculptural Head as Image, through March 10. Sculptures by Auguste Rodin and Jacob Epstein highlight this exhibition. Smart Museum; call 702-0200.
Three Maps of Bhaktapur: Representations of Space, through March 15. Divergent constructions of space in a Newari city in the Kathmandu Valley of Nepal, seen through three maps--a 1925 indigenous mandala map, a 1976 German development map, and a 1993 tourist map--and related objects and photographs are presented in this exhibit. Foster Hall; call 702-8635.
Mark Rothko: The Spirit of Myth, Early Paintings from the 1930s and 1940s, through March 17. Though Rothko is best known for his large-scale, color-field paintings, his early works consist of landscapes, still lifes, figure studies, and portraits painted in an expressionistic style. The exhibit was organized by the National Gallery of Art. Smart Museum; call 702-0200.
Through the Eyes of the Artist: A Sketching-in-the-Galleries Exhibit, through March 31. The Oriental Institute presents drawings of art and artifacts in the museum's collection created by artists of diverse backgrounds in informal sketching sessions. Oriental Institute; call 702-9507.
1900: Books From the Collection of Robert Rosenthal, through May 10. Featuring books published in the year 1900 that were collected by the late Robert Rosenthal, who was curator of Special Collections, this exhibit explores American publishing's depth and diversity at the turn of the century. Special Collections; call 702-8705.
Desire, March 10-April 21. This exhibit presents five artists--Lyle Ashton Harris, Keith Cottingham, Catherine Opie, Sharon Lockhart, and Collier Schorr--whose work pursues the notion of gender identification as a means of understanding the social construction of identity. Renaissance Society; call 702-8670.
Drawings From the Arts Club, March 19-June 2. The Smart Museum presents drawings from the collection of the Arts Club of Chicago by such artists as Paul Klee, Henri Matisse, Pablo Picasso, and Isamu Noguchi. Smart Museum; call 702-0200. (See "Center Stage.")
Peasants and "Primitivism": French Prints from Millet to Gaugin, April 18-June 9. This exhibition of 80 works traces how two meanings of "primitivism" merged in French prints of the second half of the 19th century. Gaugin, Millet, and Pissarro are among the artists. Smart Museum; call 702-0200.
New Jerichos? Recent Research on the Neolithic of Jordan, February 28 at 7:30 p.m. Alan Simmons lectures. Oriental Institute; call 702-9507.
Works of the Mind Lecture Series, 2 p.m. March 10: Raymond Ciacci, AM'84, PhD'90, Humanities lecturer, on "Chaucer's Canterbury Tales: The Wife of Bath and her Pilgrimage in Consorts." April 21: George Anastaplo, AB'48, JD'51, PhD'64, Basic Program staff member, on "Thoughts on Greek and Roman Tragedy." Judd Hall; call 702-1722.
From Conception to Old Age in Babylonian Medicine, March 27 at 7:30 p.m. Robert Biggs, professor in the Department of Near Eastern Languages and Civilization, lectures. Oriental Institute; call 702-9507.
Transylvan String Quartet, March 1 at 8 p.m. Fifth in the Chamber Music Series, the quartet makes its Chicago debut performing works by Mozart, Bentoiu, and Dvourák. Mandel Hall; call 702-8068.
University Symphony Orchestra, March 2 at 8 p.m. Barbara Schubert conducts the orchestra's winter concert, featuring Anton Bruckner's Symphony No. 8 in C minor. Mandel Hall; call 702-8069.
Lenten Vespers, March 3 at 5 p.m. The University Chorus performs in a service of readings and music. Rockefeller Chapel; call 753-1191.
Motet Choir, March 30 at 8 p.m. The choir presents a homecoming concert following its annual spring-break tour. Scott Lehmkuhl conducts. Rockefeller Chapel; call 753-1191.
Palm Sunday Organ Recital, March 31 at 5 p.m. Stefan Engels performs works by Reubke and Dupr. Rockefeller Chapel; call 753-1191.
Good Friday Concert, April 5 at 8 p.m. Bruce Tammen, AM'74, conducts the Rockefeller Memorial Chapel Choir and Symphony of the Shores in Faur's Requiem and Martin's Mass for double chorus a cappella. Rockefeller Chapel; call 753-1191.
An Evening of Brahms, April 12 at 8 p.m. The Chamber Music Series closes with pianist Andr Watts, clarinetist David Shifrin, and cellist Gary Hoffman, performing a program of Brahms. Mandel Hall; call 702-8068.
Organ, Flute, and Harpsichord Recital, April 12 at 8 p.m. Martha Stiehl plays organ music, solo harpsichord works, and duets with flutist Linda Toote. Rockefeller Chapel; call 753-1191.
Contemporary Chamber Players, April 14 at 8 p.m. Ralph Shapey conducts the annual Paul Fromm Concert. Mandel Hall; call 702-8069.
Contemporary Chamber Players, April 25 at 8 p.m. Stephen Mosko conducts the ensemble. Mandel Hall; call 702-8069.
University Symphony Orchestra, April 27 at 8 p.m. Pianist and U of C professor Charles Rosen performs with the symphony. Barbara Schubert conducts. Mandel Hall; call 702-8069.
Organ Recital with Mary Preston, April 28 at 5 p.m. Mary Preston, resident organist with the Dallas Symphony, performs works by Bach, Reger, and Durufl. Rockefeller Chapel; call 753-1191.
Off-Off Campus: Winter Quarter Revue, Fridays at 9 p.m. through March 1. Step Five: Destroy, a collection of original sketches and improv, marks Off-Off Campus's 30th revue. University Church, second-floor theater; call 702-3414.
Antigone, February 21-24 at 8 p.m. The Greek tragedy is retold in this modern version by French playwright Jean Anouilh, written during the Nazi occupation of France. F. X. Kinahan Theater; call 702-3414.
Six Degrees of Separation, February 29-March 2 and March 7-9 at 8 p.m. In John Guare's play, a New York couple are visited by a young man claiming to be one of their children's Harvard friends. After learning that he is not who he claims to be, their investigation leads them to reevaluate their own lives. Reynolds Club, first-floor theater; call 702-3414.
The Dreamer Examines his Pillow, March 4-5 at 8 p.m. This dark comedy conveys the passion of the enmity between former lovers Donna and Tony, an enmity complicated by family matters. Reynolds Club, first-floor theater; call 702-3414.
The Barber of Seville, March 27-May 19. Performed in rotating repertory with The Play's the Thing, Court presents Beaumarchais's satire in which an old doctor is determined to marry his ward. She, however, has her eyes set on a young count--and enlists the aid of the barber, Figaro. Court Theatre; call 753-4472.
The Play's the Thing, March 27-May 19. In this 1925 comedy by Ferenc Molnar, a young composer arrives at a castle on the Riviera to surprise his fiance, only to overhear a passionate exchange between her and another man. The composer's mentor turns the disaster into delight by concocting a play around the steamy dialogue they overheard. Court Theatre; call 753-4472.
First Friday Lecture Series, first Friday of every month at 12:15 p.m. March 1: Basic Program staff member Keith Cleveland, AB'64, AM'69, JD'79, lectures on "Matter and Force: Newton's Definitions." April 12: Basic Program staff member Arthur Devenport, AB'68, AM'76, lectures "On the Mahabharata and Bhagavad Gita." Chicago Cultural Center, Michigan Avenue and Randolph Street; call 702-1722.
Picasso's Classical Head. Miró's Woman, Bird, Stars. Matisse's Nude Figure. Less well-known than many paintings by the same artists, these three sketches--part of the exhibition "Drawings from the Collection of The Arts Club of Chicago" that opens at the Smart Museum of Art in March--offer fresh ways of seeing some 20th-century masters who once formed the forefront of the avant garde.
Indeed, the Arts Club of Chicago was founded in 1916 as a way to showcase the avant-garde arts: It was conceived as a place for writers, musicians, architects, and artists to meet each other and their patrons. The club's first exhibition, which opened in December 1918, was a show of portraits. The painters included Whistler, Renoir, Cassatt, and Augustus John.
Other early club showings included works by Dufy, Cezanne, and Seurat; the first Chicago show of Toulouse-Lautrec--and the first Chicago exhibition of Picasso drawings.
The Arts Club's schedule has also included a performance of Stravinsky, conducted by the composer himself; Edna St. Vincent Millay reading her poetry; a dance recital by Martha Graham; and talks by Aaron Copland and R. Buckminster Fuller. But the club's focus was its visual-arts program.
Over the years, the shows have moved from venue to venue, following the club's own relocations. The latest is under way: This December, the club will celebrate its 80th birthday by moving into brand-new quarters at Ontario and St. Clair streets.
The Smart exhibit is hardly the Art Club's first joint venture with the U of C: In 1934, the two institutions played host to Gertrude Stein and Alice B. Toklas on their visit to the city.--M.R.Y.