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Expo Chicago courts the high-minded collector with interdisciplinary offerings

This year’s edition is designed to maximise crossover potential with the second Chicago Architecture Biennial

Kenneth Josephson's Chicago (1972) will be on show with Rhona Hoffman Gallery Courtesy Rhona Hoffman Gallery

Expo Chicago, the international Modern and contemporary art fair, returns to its lakefront home. Of the 135 galleries presenting this year, Gagosian is the most conspicuous addition. Further signs of Expo’s development into a fixture on the art circuit can be read in institutional collaborations and the return of Luhring Augustine, Galerie Perrotin and Anton Kern Gallery, among others.

This year’s edition is designed to maximise crossover potential with the second Chicago Architecture Biennial. Stephanie Cristello, the fair’s director of programming, says that aligning with the design community was an important opportunity to branch out and “trace the lineage and consider where that trajectory might lead in future years”.

Expo is stretching its legs in other directions, too. A curated exhibition of sound art will be broadcast, while a collaboration with the Paris-based Palais de Tokyo and the Graham Foundation brings together works by emerging artists from France and Chicago in the Roundhouse, a 16,000 sq. ft horse stable designed by Burnham and Root in 1881, rarely seen by the public.

Tony Karman, the fair’s director and founder, said that a concerted effort was made to develop programmes that would be as elevated and relevant as possible. “Chicago demands it,” he says. Noting the strong tradition of arts patronage in the city, he adds, “Chicago collectors who were leading the world for 30 years are passing the baton to a newer generation.”

• Expo Chicago, Navy Pier, Chicago, 13-17 September

Appeared in The Art Newspaper, 293 September 2017