Free and open to the public

Closed for reinstallation

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Opening Celebration: The Allure of Matter

Celebrate The Allure of Matter with an opening weekend reception happening simultaneously at the Smart Museum of Art and Wrightwood 659.

The exhibition brings together 48 monumental works that showcase ordinary materials used in extraordinary ways. So massive in scale it requires the full footprint of two Chicago institutions, The Allure of Matter explores how conscious material choice has become a means of expression for a number of celebrated and lesser-known Chinese contemporary artists.

Enjoy food, drink, and conversations at both locations. At the Smart Museum, the afternoon opening features gallery talks led by UChicago graduate students. At Wrightwood 659, Poems While You Wait composes typewritten poetry on demand throughout the night, while Wrightwood 659 Education Associates offer gallery talks.

FREE. The reception at the Smart Museum is a drop-in event, no registration required. The reception at Wrightwood 659 has sold out—please select an alternate time to experience The Allure of Matter by visiting

Image: Zhu Jinshi, Wave of Materials, 2007/2020, xuan paper, cotton thread, bamboo, and stones. Gift of Zhu Jinshi and Pearl Lam Gallery in honor of Wu Hung, jointly acquired by the Los Angeles County Museum of Art and the Smart Museum of Art, The University of Chicago. Installation view, The Allure of Matter: Material Art from China, Los Angeles County Museum of Art, 2019–20. Photo © Museum Associates/LACMA.