Angelica Kauffman Gallery

The Angelica Kauffman Gallery: A Curatorial Project by Elaine Luther

A group photo of six of the micro galleries in the Angelica Kauffman Gallery family.

A group photo of six of the micro galleries in the Angelica Kauffman Gallery family. Art by: Top L: Sal Jones and Bryan Northup, next box, Red Thimble Designs (Kim Bates), last box in top row, Daniela Wenzel,
Loft wine crate: Photos by John and Marilyn McCord.  Middle box, Elaine Luther and Jen Bromel, last box on the R: Sarah Arriagada.

How the Miniature Gallery Came to Be

I’ve been working with miniatures in my art for ages, since 2006, at least. And I started out as a jeweler and metalsmith, so this is a scale that makes sense to me. As the gallery is getting started, in March, 2021, I’ve been doing as my 100 Day Project, 100 Days of Photos with Miniatures. For those, each day I take a photo with my vintage wooden spools that once held thread, arranged with other small objects, including doll house miniatures. Some of them are artsy and some of them are cute, such as the Crazy Cat Lady one and the Plant Lady one.

It just kind of evolved, that there could be a tiny art gallery, at that same scale I was working with every day. Oh! And there was also a conversation online, about an artist in Seattle who’s started a sort of Little Free Library for art. Take an art, leave an art.

An artist I know suggested I take a dollhouse and start a sort of miniature cultural center! I just happen to have an extra dollhouse, and I thought about putting the gallery inside of that. The challenge is that it’s very, very pink and might be hard to paint, and it’s kind of dark inside, at least if you’re trying to take pictures and videos and share them online!

So I decided to build a stand-alone gallery.

Here it is, in progress, so very close to completion. I’m painting the floor gray to look like a concrete floor.

The Angelica Kauffman Gallery by Elaine Luther, a 12" x 12" x 12" white box gallery for very small art.

The Angelica Kauffman Gallery by Elaine Luther, a 12″ x 12″ x 12″ white box gallery for very small art.

I’ve ordered miniature benches and wine and cheese for the gallery. The wine and cheese will only be in the gallery for the opening reception of course. I have work from a few artists in hand already, and I’ve begun photographing the art and posting it on the gallery’s Instagram.

Update, 4/11/21:  I’ve now built a second gallery, you can see the build process in this post.

The micro gallery, The Angelica Kauffman Gallery has its own Instagram:

See below for an archive of all shows in the gallery, and to learn how to participate.

How to Participate with the Micro Gallery

Call for Art: A Play Mobil Person Looks at a Blank Canvas. A smaller canvas near by says "Call for Art."

The general, on-going Call for Art as well as specific ones can be seen here:

Member, the Guild of Micro Galleries

We are proud to be members of the international Guild of Micro Galleries,

An orange frame has black text that says: Member of the Guild of Micro Galleries

Archive of Exhibitions in the Angelica Kauffman Gallery, a Micro Gallery 2021-Present

A view of an art exhibition at the Angelica Kauffman Gallery, a 12" x 12" x 12" gallery. You can see art on the wall, a sculpture in the corner, a woven metal piece leaning against the wall. A table holds wine, cheese and soda. A bench holds flowers and a wine glass.

Second Show at the Angelica Kauffman Gallery

Welcome to the opening reception of our second show! Art by:

Charity Capili Ellis @ccapelliscreate and
 (Group of four works.)

Tess Dillenberger @tessdillenberger (Pen and ink)

Gina Lee Robbins@ginallerobbins and (Woven metal)

Shilin Hora @shilinhora (Work on easel with seeds)

Jill Kramer @chimerapress.jakramer and (Collage/painting on back wall)

Elaine Luther @elaine_luther and (Freestanding sculpture)

And the flowers are a gift to celebrate our being admitted to the Guild of Micro Galleries!  For our reception, we have wine, cheese and EANABs, Equally Attractive Non-Alcoholic Beverages.  Most artworks are for sale, contact the artist directly to purchase! (Works by Elaine Luther and Gina Lee Robbins are not for sale.)  Additional photos of this show are on the gallery’s Instagram.  This show went live April 12, 2021.

First Show at the Angelica Kauffman Gallery

A white box with gray floor has mini art exhibited on the walls and one piece is on an easel. There is also a bench in the center of the gallery and a side table with mini drinks.

Inaugural Art Show at the Angelica Kauffman Gallery by Elaine Luther. Artwork by Bryan Northrup, Tamara Wasserman, Maria Romero Luther and Terry Clarbour.

This show went live on Instagram on March 28th! Thanks so much to our very first artists for being willing to make special tiny art for our gallery! Here are additional views of the show.

A white box with gray floor has mini art exhibited on the walls and there is also a bench in the center of the gallery.

On the left side of the image is a work by Bryan Northrup. To the right of that work is “Chocolate” by Tamara Wasserman.

A white box with gray floor has mini art exhibited on the walls and on an easel. There is also a bench in the center of the gallery and against one wall, a table holding drinks.

Artwork by Terry Clarbour and Maria Romero Luther.

Mosaic by Terry Clarbour and painting by Maria Romero Luther.

Links to the artists’ websites and social media handles can be found on the gallery’s Instagram.

Links to Blog Posts about Additional Shows in the Angelica Kauffman Gallery

There have been so many shows already, that if I post a record of each of them here, as I had planned, this page could become quite full and slow to load!  Instead, I’ll link to the blog posts below, one post for each show.  It’s now August 2021 and we’ve held a dozen shows!  With three solo shows booked for fall!

June 2021 Solo Shows at The Waste Shed

For the month ofJune 2021, three micro galleries went to the Glass Case Gallery at The Waste Shed, Chicago’s Premier Creative Reuse Store.  Each gallery featured a solo show by an artist: Andrew Venell, Terry Clarbour and Bryan Northup.

Micro Galleries at the Glass Case Gallery

May 2021 – Introducing the Dollhouse Art Center!

In late May 2021, we added the Angelica Kauffman Dollhouse Art Center, which includes a cafe! You can see that one (summer 2021) in the window of the Calypso Moon Studio in Oak Park, IL and the blog post about that show is here:

Upcoming Shows for the Angelica Kauffman Galleries

July 2021 Mel Kolstad Solo Show

In July 2021, we hosted a solo show with Mel Kolstad, you can see the blog post about that show here:

Solo Show: Mel Kolstad’s Art in the Angelica Kauffman Gallery

July 2021 Group Show

Also in July, we hosted a group show that traveled to The Seed boutique in Riverside, IL.  Here’s a photo of that show:

Art in a 12" x 12" box gallery, with bench and table.

Artists in this show:  (L to R) Elaine Luther, Alex Brightbill, Shilin Hora, Mel Kolstad, Maria Romero Luther, Magali Almada.

We made a video of all the shows we’ve hosted, from April to June 2021, you can see that in this post:

Retrospective Video at the Gallery

Our August 2021 group show was Black & White & Red All Over, and featured two U.K. artists.

August Group Show: Black & White & Red All Over

Micro-Micro Galleries

And in August, I asked myself, How Small is Too Small?  And started putting tiny art into mint tins, sardine tins and cough drop tins.  You can see them all here:

Micro-Micro Galleries: Tiny Art in Mint Tins!

Angelica Kauffman Gallery at the Terrain Biennial, Fall 2021

We built an outdoor version of the micro gallery for the Terrain Biennial 2021, with support from the Awesome Foundation Chicago!  During the approximately 6 week run of Terrain, we changed out the show three times.  Here’s the first show:

Micro Gallery Joins Terrain Biennial!

And here’s a blog post that’s the 2021 Year in Review for the gallery: 

"We're Booked for 12 1/2 Month! Image Graphic

Amazingly, in the gallery’s first year, the various box galleries and dollhouses were out in display in store windows, boutiques, a library, and a glass case gallery inside a creative reuse store, for 12.5 months total. Which is amazing, considering we didn’t start the gallery in January.

As of this writing, in August 2022, the galleries have lived entirely online, with no public outings, but there will be a big show in 2024, and we’re waiting to hear about a public showing later this year.

2022 at the Angelica Kauffman Gallery

For 2022, I decided to switch from group shows to mostly solo shows.  In part because it’s easier for me, (just one package to receive and statement to gather), and in part because it’s more fun for the artists – they can create a solo show, a vision, and create their own masterpiece of a show in the gallery.  And they’re having a lot of fun with it.

I’m currently putting on about two shows per month.  So far this year we’ve hosted solo shows with:

January: Charity Ellis, Sarah Arriagada

February: Melonie Mulkey, Jen Bromel

March: Nina Wood, Paul Malone

April:  Rebecca Potts Aguirre, Juan C. Hernandez

May: Group Show, Taking Up Space.  This show included art by Kelley Clink, Amanda Mulcahy, Jill Nahrstedt, Cathleen Cramer, Eve Lynch, Deirdre Colgan Jones and Elaine Luther.  Taking Up Space is a global initiative to show art by women and non-binary artists in May.

June: Pricilla Perkins

July: Heather Lowe, Emily Runnerstrom

August: Tess Dillenberger, Dollhouse Takeover

September: Stephanie Capps Dyke, Annie Zirin, Phyllis Frick

October: Jean Gray Mohs

November, December: TBA!

January – February 2022 Solo Shows by Jen Bromel, Charity Ellis and Sarah Arriagada

Three Solo Shows in the Micro Gallery

February 2022 Solo Show by Melonie Mulkey

Here’s an interview and an image of the solo show with Melonie Mulkey:

July 2022 Solo Show by Emily Runnerstrom

Going a bit out of order, here’s the interview with the artist, Emily Runnerstrom, along with views of her solo show of encaustic art.

In between Emily’s show and Mel’s show we had multiple group shows of quilts by members of Zak Foster’s Quilty Nook. Looks like I was so busy with those shows, and posting them on Instagram – that I haven’t done a blog post yet. There have been 3 group shows so far, with two more to come! And something over 30 quilts!

Miniature art works by Jean Gray Mohs.

Miniature art works by Jean Gray Mohs, as installed at the Angelica Kauffman Gallery.

In December, 2022 we had shows with Rachel Hancock and Jean Gray Mohs. In October 2022, we hosted a solo show of quilts by Stephanie Capps Dyke, you can read her interview on the blog here. The interview with Jean Gray Mohs is here. In August, 2022 we hosted Tess Dillenberger and her illustrations on matchboxes, with tiny coordinating books inside each matchbox! More updates and pictures to come!

January 2023 Dollhouse Art Center Takeover by Mel Kolstad

This show features almost 300 collages by Mel Kolstad, each collage is just 1″ x 1″. The back exterior wall has 90 collages on it. Here are some images of this show of amazingly detailed works of art. See more in the blog post.

2nd floor of dollhouse, room on the left. Art by Mel Kolstad.

The room on the left side, 2nd floor of the Dollhouse Art Center. Artwork by Mel Kolstad.

2nd floor room in dollhouse with art.

This room is on the second floor, on the right of the Dollhouse Art Center. Collages by Mel Kolstad.

Dollhouse art gallery shown during the opening reception.

The opening reception of Mel Kolstad’s solo show of 1″ x 1″ collages.

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