After Punk


"I was supposed to meet Jesse Butcher on Saturday afternoon for a tour of his new gallery exhibit, “Until It Becomes Us,” but he was running late. When he arrived, he told me that his bus had been stopped in a riot: protesters had managed to block traffic entirely on Homan Avenue until police broke them apart. Butcher was split between admiration for the rioters’ passionate collective action and irritation at the thirty-minute traffic jam he had endured, an ambivalence that echoed strongly in his exhibition, presented by Ordinary Projects at Mana Contemporary through March 20.The words “PIG CITY” are spray-painted, silver and metallic, in an amateurish scrawl across a large, white canvas in the back of the gallery. The phrase can easily be read in conjunction with Chicago’s recent Homan Square controversy, but while Butcher sees the recent public response to police brutality in dialogue with his work, he says that he started using the term years ago, without reference to a single incident or even a particular city."

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South Side Weekly
March 9, 2015

Courtesy of the artist.