happenings

Now Open: “Dear Carmencita”

A pop-up bar concept celebrating The Art Institute’s upcoming exhibition, John Singer Sargent and Chicago’s Gilded Age


JULY 2018 – In partnership with The Art Institute of Chicago, Johalla Projects and Land and Sea Dept., we’re excited to welcome you to the opening of Dear Carmencita, a pop-up bar experience opening on Thursday, July 12, in the hotel’s ground floor Tank space.

Dear Carmencita will celebrate The Art Institute’s exhibition, John Singer Sargent and Chicago’s Gilded Age. Presenting the full range of his work— including his beloved portraits –– John Singer Sargent and Chicago’s Gilded Age chronicles a never-told story about this celebrated American artist, tracing his Chicago connections and illuminating the city’s vibrant art scene at the turn of the 20th century. Sargent (1856–1925) became the most sought-after portraitist of his generation on both sides of the Atlantic. Born in Italy to American parents, he traveled the world in search of subjects and worked professionally for more than 50 years creating vibrant, lively paintings.

His assertive portrait of Carmen Dauset, for which the pop-up is named, commanded the attention of critics and museumgoers when it was displayed at the Art Institute in 1890 and helped put Chicago on the map as a center for contemporary art and culture.

The pop-up bar, featuring interiors by Chicago-based art gallery Johalla Projects and local designer Marina Kozak, will be a step into the Gilded Age, presenting a look at what the finely-appointed parlor of one of Sargent’s benefactors may have looked like. Hints of Sargent’s work will abound, encouraging guests to visit the Art Institute for a full look at Sargent, his subjects, and Chicago at the turn of the century. The bar’s interiors will match the landmarked historical elements in the rest of the hotel, which was originally built in 1893 during Chicago’s World’s Fair and celebrates its 125th anniversary this year.

Feast your eyes on art as you enjoy a menu of cocktails from Land and Sea Dept. beverage director Paul McGee inspired by Sargent’s work and Champagne Henriot Brut Souverain. Dear Carmencita will feature nightly interactive programming co-curated by professionals from the Art Institute and the Chicago Athletic Association hotel, including talks from the museum’s curator and art experts, interactive painting workshops, and more. 

Looking to get inspired by Sargent’s works in person? Tickets to the exhibition at the Art Institute are available now through September 30.

The pop-up will be open Thursday – Saturday from 5pm – 12am, beginning July 12 through August 4, with a final closing party on Sunday, August 5. Visit the Chicago Athletic Events microsite to keep up on news and programming, and sneak a preview of happenings by night below! 💃

Thursday, July 12
Opening Night Soiree featuring Chicago Youth Symphony Orchestra

Friday, July 13
Paint a Portrait, Lose a Friend – Watercolor Workshop
6-8pm
Take a Portrait, Gain a Follower – Headshots from a professional photographer
8-10pm

Saturday, July 14
Olfactory Science with Aroma Workshop
7-8:30pm

Thursday, July 19
Curator Talk with Annelise Madsen of John Singer Sargent and Chicago’s Gilded Age
6-7pm
“Sit for Yourself(i.e.)” – Gilded Makeovers & Portrait Photos
7:30-9:30pm

Friday, July 20
Dog Night & Pet Portraiture with Pinot’s Palette
6-8:30pm

Saturday, July 21
World’s “Fare”: Chicago Dogs and Palmer Brownies, 1893-style

Thursday, July 26
Gallery Gathering
6-7pm
Evening Associates After party + Silent Auction and Aux Cord DJs
8pm-12am

Friday, July 27
Vintage Sample Sale and Nail Art
7-10pm

Saturday, July 28
Attainable Art Pop-Up Market
7-10pm

Thursday, August 2
Contemporary portraiture talk: Lauren Peterson of Phillips Auction House
5:30-6:30pm
Figure Drawing class with Laura Mae Noble
7-8:30pm

Friday, August 3
Live Music featuring Devil in a Woodpile
9-11pm

Saturday, August 4
1890’s Pre-Game
5-7pm
Diva Karaoke & Gilded Ballads
8-11pm

Sunday, August 5
Ensemble Espanol Flamenco performance
6-7:30pm
Salsa Lessons, DJ & Dancing
8-11pm

About The Art Institute of Chicago: The Art Institute of Chicago, founded in 1879, is a world-renowned art museum housing one of the largest permanent collections in the United States. The Art Institute collects, preserves, and interprets works in every medium, representing the world’s diverse artistic traditions, and across all historical periods. With a collection of approximately 300,000 art works, the museum has particularly strong holdings in Impressionist and Post-Impressionist painting, modern and contemporary art, early 20th century European painting and sculpture, Japanese prints, and photography. The museum’s 2009 addition, the Modern Wing, features the latest in green museum technology and 264,000 square feet dedicated to modern and contemporary art, photography, architecture and design, and new museum education facilities. The Art Institute mounts more than 35 special exhibitions per year and features lectures, gallery tours, and special performances on a daily basis.

About Chicago Athletic Association: Located on Chicago’s famed Michigan Avenue across from iconic Millennium Park in the city’s Loop District, the Chicago Athletic Association hotel combines its storied legacy as one of the nation’s most revered social clubs with modern day sophistication.  The historic building’s transformation into a 241-room boutique hotel is a result of a visionary partnership among international hotel management company Two Roads Hospitality, AJ Capital Partners, Geolo Capital, Agman Partners, Chicago-based Hartshorne Plunkard Architecture, and the award-winning design firm Roman and Williams Building and Interiors. The Chicago Athletic Association hotel features 17,000 square feet of stunning event space with sweeping views of Lake Michigan, elegantly-appointed guest rooms – including 23 uniquely-designed suites – an interactive game room and multiple innovative culinary experiences. The food and beverage outlets include a rooftop bar with captivating views of the Jay Pritzker Pavilion at Millennium Park, restaurant concepts by Chicago-based Land & Sea Dept. and Shake Shack.  These exceptional offerings for incoming visitors and locals alike make Chicago Athletic Association poised to once again become the epicenter of the city’s thriving social scene.

For reservations or more information, please visit chicagoathletichotel.com or call 312.940.3552. Stay connected with Chicago Athletic Association hotel on FacebookTwitter, and Instagram.

About Land and Sea Dept.: Land and Sea Dept. is a Chicago-based concept and project development studio working creatively and passionately across disciplines. Its principals – Cody Hudson, Jon Martin, Robert McAdams and Peter Toalson – have collective decades of involvement in the fields of art, construction, design, event production, identity, marketing, music, and woodworking. Their experience allows them to apply their unique creative perspectives across a variety of applications and constantly develop new concepts. Land and Sea Dept. has completed a broad range of projects (art exhibitions, film screenings, live concerts, bars, restaurants, structural designs, and more), including some of Logan Square’s best-loved establishments: Michelin-starred Longman & Eagle, Parson’s Chicken & Fish, and Lost Lake, and most recently, Lonesome Rose.  As well as four restaurant concepts within the restored and reimagined Chicago Athletic Association: the James Beard Award-Winning Cherry Circle Room, Game Room, Drawing Room, and Milk Room.

About Johalla Projects: Johalla Projects was founded in Chicago’s Wicker Park neighborhood as a venue for emerging and mid-career artists. Over the last decade it has blossomed into a collaborative of artists, writers, and curators focused on celebrating and upholding the integrity of original, provocative work without compromise. Now located in West Town, Johalla Projects draws on the education and rich experience of its team in visual art, music, and performance to also attract clients and projects independent of a gallery environment. Working on both a local and national level, Johalla offers creative consulting to build and strengthen in-house programs and curate art collections, oftentimes introducing innovative artists to a broader audience. In its creative partnerships with institutions like the Chicago Athletic Association, the Field Museum, Fashion Outlets of Chicago, Hoxton Hotel, Soho House Chicago, and Tourists, Johalla Projects has worked to execute large-scale art installations, stage murals, curate weeks of event programming, and shape the atmosphere of a location through art acquisition and design.

About Champagne Henriot: Founded in Reims in 1808, Champagne Henriot is one of the few remaining family-owned houses with over two hundred years of independence. Over the years, the house has cultivated an audacious approach and a distinctive, luminous style of its own, guided by the pursuit of the purest expression of Chardonnay. The Henriot family’s strong relationship with Cellar Master Laurent Fresnet and partner growers is essential in creating each Henriot cuvée and maintaining its uncompromising quality standards. Today, the Henriot family’s expertise is backed not only by their storied history in Champagne but also in their celebrated triumphs in both Burgundy and Chablis with Bouchard Père & Fils, William Fèvre and Château de Poncié.

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