Th!nkArt™ is an art and policy salon that has featured established and emerging artists from Europe, the United States and South America.

Launched in 2006 by Laurie R. Glenn, our aim is to forge a dialogue between the worlds of art and politics. Th!nkArt was built on the legacy of café society, famous in the late 19th and early 20th centuries for gathering artists and intellectuals of the day. Th!nkArt fosters a salon setting for thought-provoking exhibitions that integrate a variety of artistic interpretations including literary readings, music, dance, theatrical performances, film, and cultural programming.

“The dialogue that emerges in a salon environment allows us to understand our joint humanity,” says Glenn. “We are trying to create something more than the traditional art gallery experience. Our goal is to have people experience a larger vision of the world through our presentation of arts from around the world.”

IMG_1372Th!nkArt began its quest to engage a dialogue between art and politics via exhibitions in private residences, and later in our own dedicated gallery spaces in Chicago. Combining the best aspects of both venues, Th!nkArt now continues its work as a “virtual” salon, creating the appropriate settings for exhibitions and integrative, conversation-starting activities in third-party homes, galleries, and public spaces.

We call our exhibitions Aparté. In French, aparté means something that is apart. We do so to underscore our deep desire to move art from the canvas to a conversation between human beings about art, philosophy, politics, and the world at large. We have been successful in creating many such conversations at numerous, well-noted Aparté. Our attendees have ranged from collectors, professionals, art patrons, gallery owners, and artists, to civic and philanthropic leaders, museum board members, and residents of Chicago and its surrounding suburbs, and the world.

Th!nkArt has participated in a series of international art fairs including the 2007 Bridge Art Fairs in Chicago, London, and Miami; Slick 2008 in Paris; and Art Chicago 2009 and 2010.

In 2008, Th!nkArt curated an exhibition at The Art Center in Highland Park entitled Art Francais featuring both established and emerging French artists. Also in 2008, Th!nkArt arranged with the Hyde Park Art Center to have David Gista featured as part of its Flamenco and Flames exhibition. Th!nkArt also participated in Chicago Artist Month featuring the paintings of Italian artist Carlo LoCascio.

IMG_1444As part of an international human rights summit held at the Hotel de Ville/City Hall of Paris in March 2009, Th!nkArt featured an exhibition of our artist Florent Moutti with the national human rights activist Rev. Patricia Watkins of the United Congress. We also partnered in January 2009 with FLATFILE Galleries as part of a joint gallery exhibition entitled French Kiss & Karma with French and Indian artists.

One of our highlights of 2009 was our partnership with CIMMfest, The Chicago International Movies and Music Festival where in March 2009 we presented both the award-winning photography of Richard Bellia as well as presented four films from across the globe in the salon.

Since our founding year, a wide-range of institutions have sponsored or collaborated with Th!nkArt, including the French Cultural Services of Chicago, Alliance Française de Chicago, the Chicago Museum of Contemporary Art North Shore Affiliates, Chicago’s Lettuce Entertain You Enterprises, Inc., City of Chicago Paris Committee of The Sister Cities Program, United Congress, Poetry Center of Chicago, The University of Chicago, Chicago Danztheatre Ensemble, Paris-based Friedland Rivault Gallery and Atelier Pasnic.