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Conversation: Painting, Quilting, Sourcing—Christina Ramberg’s Artistic Practices

Thurs, Jun 20 | 6:00–7:00



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Christina Ramberg

Christina Ramberg (1946–1995) was an influential and beloved member of Chicago’s contemporary art scene. Christina Ramberg: A Retrospective—the first comprehensive exhibition devoted to Ramberg in almost 30 years—presents approximately 100 works from public and private collections, with several key pieces drawn from the Art Institute’s collection.

From intimate early paintings focused on the pattern and form of women’s hairstyles and garments, to mature work featuring cropped female torsos in lingerie that contains and restrains, the exhibition presents her most iconic imagery while grappling with all phases and elements of Ramberg’s continually evolving career, including her last geometric abstractions and her quilting practice.

In this conversation, artists Julia Fish and Rebecca Shore and critic Judith Russi Kirshner explore the continuing importance of Ramberg’s wide-ranging artistic practices, moderated by curator Thea Liberty Nichols. 

Support for this program is provided by the Allan McNab Endowed Fund.

About the Speakers

In her work, Julia Fish engages both site and context, in temporary public installations as well as the sustained sequence of paintings and works on paper developed in reference to the architecture of her home and studio. Fish’s paintings were presented in 2010, the Whitney Biennial, and a career-spanning record of curated group and solo exhibitions includes DePaul Art Museum’s recent ten-year survey, Julia Fish: bound by spectrum. Fish is professor emerita, University of Illinois at Chicago.

Judith Russi Kirshner was curator at the Museum of Contemporary Art in Chicago from l976 to l980 and the Terra Museum of American Art, Chicago, from l985 to l987. She is former dean of the College of Architecture and the Arts at the University of Illinois at Chicago and former deputy director for Education and Woman’s Board Endowed Chair at the Art Institute of Chicago. Consulting editor for Art in Chicago from the Great Fire to Now (2018), her many publications include essays on Julia Fish, Judy Ledgerwood, Christina Ramberg, Alice Shaddle and the Italian feminist critic Carla Lonzi.

Rebecca Shore has been living and working in Chicago since graduating from the School of the Art Institute in 1981. She was an adjunct professor there for 25 years from 1991 until 2016. Shore made both quilts and paintings until 1994, and has primarily been a painter since then. She draws inspiration from a rich variety of intellectual and aesthetic sources, and her current paintings explore an imagined world related to architecture and domestic spaces, often with an implied narrative. Shore is represented by Corbett vs Dempsey Gallery and will be having a show there in June 2024

Thea Liberty Nichols is associate research curator in Modern and Contemporary Art at the Art Institute of Chicago. Her prior work for the museum included co-organizing Hairy Who? 1966–1969 (2018), with Ann Goldstein and Mark Pascale, and providing support for Andy Warhol: From A to B and Back Again (2019) and Ray Johnson c/o (2021).

Please note that this is an in-person event that takes place at the museum.

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Closed captioning will be available for this program. For questions related to accessibility accommodations, please email


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