Wednesday, December 15, 2021

Signal Boost

I got my COVID-19 booster shot last week! Moderna at Walgreens, like my first two doses.

An artist opportunity: Chicago DCASE’s 2022 Individual Artists Program Grant application is now open! The deadline is January 7, 2022, 5pm. I’m a past recipient; both times I applied, I was selected to receive the grant! The first was for my interactive public art and mapping project, Dreams of a City*, back in the day; the second was when I conceived of SLAYSIAN two years ago. More details for IAP here.

*(You can check out recent interviews about that passion project / labor of love on WGN Morning News (video, recorded live), WBEZ (audio, recorded live), and the Chicago Reader (article).)

If you apply, best of luck!

Speaking of SLAYSIAN

I finally put this video on my TikTok:


Thank you ##artists & all who came! đź’• ##artistsoftiktok ##artistontiktok ##artshow ##curator ##artgallery ##aapi ##asianamerican ##chicago ##art ##artist ##fypă‚·

♬ original sound - Jenny Lam

Some more artist spotlights:

Skate decks and coffins and fans, oh my! I love the range of materials Susie Xiong (InsomniaBird) used for her art—all emblazoned with her signature big-eyed bird motif—in the show! These nine pieces are all available to collect here.

Before Kristin Anahit Cass showed me her new series for the show, I’d never seen SWANA futurism before! Exquisite. From her artist statement:

“Cass’s works in this exhibit are from a project examining SWANA (South West Asian and North African) futurism. Her work explores multiple temporalities, much as ancestral divination practices harness a nonlinear understanding of time and simultaneous occupation of spaces. While disorienting time and space as we take control of our narratives, we experience past, present, and future at once. The portraits from The Republic of My Imagination series visualize the world that could be, building on the cultures of our ancestors. They call out for broader solidarity within the SWANA region. They envision the liberation that could be shared, especially when we open ourselves to the voices of queer, feminist and other marginalized groups. The otherworldly landscapes from the series A Planet of Our Own cross the divide between real and imagined places that our ancestors built or inhabited, where we embrace the past and move into the future, challenging entrenched narratives of conquest and Eurocentric histories. Cass imagines a future of wonder, beauty, and the possibilities we create for ourselves.”

Kristin’s seven pieces in SLAYSIAN 2.0 can be collected here.

And the process behind Justin Suico’s Six Roses, one of his two lovely new acrylic paintings in the exhibition (and they’re both available as well!):

To bookend this post with personal updates:

Thank you to Instagrammers Chicago and Secret Chicago for sharing my photo of Chicago Union Station! I have so many wonderful memories involving that place.

Spot the Amish!

Lastly, in case you missed it in the previous post, I’m the Featured Artist for the second issue of the literary journal Lover’s Eye Press! Founding editor-in-chief Eniko Deptuch Vághy opened our interview with these kind words:

“When I first saw Jenny Lam, I knew I had to meet her. As an artist, independent curator, writer, and overall badass, Jenny’s sparkling grace and exuding talent make her an inherently magnetic and unforgettable figure. Not only is Jenny brilliant, but she is probably one of the busiest artists I’ve ever encountered. Her interest in the world and people around her reveals her belief in the importance of facilitating connections between individuals through conversation or collaborative art projects—sometimes both simultaneously.”

Thank you so much, Eni! Read the rest here.

Tuesday, November 30, 2021

Mind’s Eye

I was interviewed by Lover’s Eye Press as the featured artist of the lit mag’s second issue! Thank you to founding editor-in-chief Eniko Deptuch Vághy (so much love to you!) and the LEP team; what an honor and pleasure.

What an introduction!

In our conversation I discuss my projects (including Dreams of a City, I CAN DO THAT, and SLAYSIAN), my influences, and my love of interactive art, and I reveal that I wrote high fantasy novels as a tween for fun (didn’t we all?). You can read my interview here. (And pictured above is a sketch I drew a few years ago.)

Back to SLAYSIAN 2.0:

Sold at the opening last week and via Artists on the Lam’s online shop last night: Baigujing prints by Vivian Le; and sold through the online shop last night: Vivian’s other new piece in SLAYSIAN 2.0, Harvey! (I love its frame so much.) Congratulations to Vivian and thank you to the collectors for your support!

And another work that sold at the opening: Thank U, Next by Nini Hawes! (With another unconventional frame that I absolutely love.) Congrats to Nini and thank you to the buyer!

Collect Nini’s other digital prints (including another new one created for this show) and more art by 22 local Asian American artists here.

Thursday, November 25, 2021


I’m so thankful for the community we’ve built and continue to build.

Selfies by participating artists Priscilla Huang and Robert Apolinar at the opening on Saturday (I definitely didn’t know where the lens on Robert’s phone was):

Something I’m proud of is curating group shows that turn out to be some of the artists’ first real gallery exhibition. (Reminder that for SLAYSIAN—like most of the other big group shows I curate—I put out an open call for artists, which I love doing because I get to “discover” so many talented people.) Sophie Pokorny is one of them:

And another piece that sold at the opening: Double Mother by Alex Belardo Kostiw. Congratulations, Alex! Unbeknownst to me, Kimberly Atwood of Elephant Room Gallery took a photo of me taking a photo of Alex’s piece:

Thank you, Kim!

Although SLAYSIAN 2.0 is physically on view until January 15, I’ve set up an online shop of the available works here, just in time for the holiday weekend. Collect art by 22 talented local Asian artists!

Monday, November 22, 2021

A Stitch in Time

One of the pieces that sold at the opening on Saturday night: Coil (upper left in the third photo below) by Sam Riesmeyer! Congratulations to Sam (a.k.a. The Punk Rock Stitcher) and thank you to the collector for your support!

If you weren’t/aren’t able to make it out and want to own some art by 22 talented local Asian artists, I’ve just set up the online shop for the available works in SLAYSIAN 2.0 here!

Sunday, November 21, 2021

Early Thanks

(I make an appearance at the 0:10 mark)

Thank you thank you thank you! To everyone who came to the opening of SLAYSIAN 2.0 last night, to all the artists (I kept raving to everyone about how great of a group you are, and it’s been so fun to finally meet and talk to you in real life)!, and to the folks at Co-Prosperity Gallery for your support and for making this happen in person after two years and for trusting me / my vision! The vibes were perfect, the turnout was amazing (but the atmosphere was still chill), and it was nice knowing that everyone in the room was vaxxed. And I loved so many of your outfits! And I sold some art! (Congratulations to the artists and thank you to the collectors!) For those who weren’t/aren’t able to make it and want a piece, I’ll be setting up an online shop (like DECAHEDRON’s) for this show at the newer Artists on the Lam site soon, so stay tuned for that / bookmark it.

The show runs ‘til January 15. (Viewing days and hours here.) At some point before then we’ll have extra programming like artist talks and demos, so get excited for more opportunities to hang with this incredible exhibition!

If you took any photos or videos, email me at artists.on.the.lam {at} or/and tag me on social media (I’m @artistsonthelam on Instagram and @TheJennyLam on Twitter and Facebook) and I might post yours! (I’ve already been sharing your Insta stories in mine; check ‘em out.)

Saturday, November 20, 2021


Two years later, the day is finally here: SLAYSIAN 2.0 opens in person tonight! 6-9pm, 3219 S. Morgan. Wear a mask and come fully vaccinated (bring proof of vax—a photo is fine) and enjoy amazing art by 22 Asian artists from Chicago and the surrounding Midwest area.

Also, the exhibition is one of Bad at Sports’ Top 5 Weekend Picks!  

Thank you! In case you missed it, the show is also one of Sixty Inches from Center’s November Picks and is featured on Block Club Chicago.

Thursday, November 18, 2021

Around the Block

SLAYSIAN 2.0 is on Block Club Chicago!

Thank you to Amy Qin!

Install’s been going well. (Here’s a little sneak peek.) And I’m not just saying that because artist Julius Bautista brought donuts today.

Two more days ‘til the opening!

Wednesday, November 17, 2021

Great Lakes

“Jenny, stand here and look like you’re telling me where to put this.”

Today was day 2 of artwork install (here’s day 1) and pictured is a regram from Stafford Smith, who drove all the way from Grand Rapids, Michigan, and is one of the 22 artists in SLAYSIAN 2.0, which opens this Saturday!

Also, the exhibition is one of Sixty Inches from Center’s November Art Picks—thank you!

Tuesday, November 16, 2021

Hang Time

 SLAYSIAN 2.0 is on Choose Chicago and The Visualist—thank you!

Today was the first day of install and thus my first day doing this, in person, in years. I actually forgot what it was like. And after staring at the artists’ work digitally for two years it’s so nice to be able to see—and touch, which I gotta do when I see art I’m curating—this art in real life! So many textures and details that simply cannot be captured in a JPG, and even the colors are different. (Many of the artists created brand new work for the exhibition too.) And, of course, it’s lovely to finally meet these artists in person!

The show is starting to come together, and it opens this Saturday!

Monday, November 8, 2021


I am so happy to announce that the in-person exhibition of SLAYSIAN is finally happening! It opens Saturday, November 20. Come (properly masked and fully vaxxed). Most of the artists created brand new work for this physical iteration, so you’ll be seeing art that’s not in the online version. Read my official statement here or/and below.

Artists on the Lam presents


On view: Saturday, November 20, 2021 – Saturday, January 15, 2022

Created by award-winning Chicago artist and independent curator Jenny Lam, SLAYSIAN 2.0 is a group exhibition whose journey began in the summer of 2019, when Lam proposed an art show that would function as a celebration—a celebrAsian, if you will—of local Asian American artists. In January 2020, Lam put out an open call for SLAYSIAN, emphasizing the absence of theme and that the artists did not necessarily have to make art about being Asian; simply being and creating were enough. The ensuing exhibition was scheduled to open on March 20, 2020; this later happened to become the first day of Illinois’ stay at home order. As the opening approached, the pandemic became a reality. Lam postponed the exhibition “until things get better (have hope; they will),” as she wrote at Artists on the Lam, and spent the beginning of shelter in place moving the exhibition online, where it served as welcome respite and garnered acclaim from local, national and international outlets. An excerpt from South Side Weekly’s article about the virtual show:
“Spanning neighborhoods, ethnicities, and mediums, SLAYSIAN showcases a subset of artists that have always been part of the city’s art scene, but rarely acknowledged as a collective. […] SLAYSIAN also examines how artists can value their identity while refusing to be pigeonholed by it. […] Their work raises questions of what it means to inhabit spaces designed specifically for artists to grow, but where the Asian American experience may still be sidelined. […] In addition to its role in educating and engaging with the broader Chicago community, much of SLAYSIAN reflects an inward-looking conversation among Asian Americans. […] SLAYSIAN embodies the aspiration that those at the outskirts of a society can redefine what success means for ourselves. […] By allowing for a multitude of stories, […] Instead of being locked into one narrative as victim or immigrant, their art is allowed to grow with the times. […] The exhibition showcases the determination of individuals to find their own answers to what the role of the Asian American artist is.” –Eileen Li, South Side Weekly, June 2020

Now, two years later, you are invited to enjoy this exhibition in person. The show itself has evolved; many of the artists have created brand new pieces for this iteration. At long last, we proudly present to you SLAYSIAN 2.0.

Hailing from all over Chicago and the surrounding Midwest area, SLAYSIAN 2.0’s participating artists include:

Aimy Tien, Alex Belardo Kostiw, Caroline Liu, Charlene Moy, Chris Gallevo, Dao Nguyen, James Gu, Julius Dizon-Cruz Bautista, Justin Suico, Kaitlyn Hwang, Kristin Anahit Cass, Muriel Christensen, Nini Hawes, Priscilla Huang, Richard Gessert, Robert Apolinar, Sam Riesmeyer, Sophie Pokorny, Stafford Smith, Susie Xiong (InsomniaBird), Vivian Le, and Yuqing Zhu.

Opening reception: Saturday, November 20, 2021, 6-9pm
Location: Co-Prosperity Gallery, Public Media Institute, 3219 S. Morgan St., Chicago, IL 60608
You must wear a mask and you must be fully vaccinated. Let’s continue to keep each other and our communities safe. Proof of vaccination will be required.

Visiting hours following the reception: Fridays 4-7pm and Saturdays 2-5pm, closed on holidays
Masks and proof of vax required

Instagram: @artistsonthelam | Twitter: @TheJennyLam

View SLAYSIAN 1.0 here.

Tuesday, September 14, 2021

Bright and Early

I was interviewed live on WGN Morning News—my first time on TV!—yesterday! Thank you to anchors Robin Baumgarten and Larry Potash for having me, and thank you to WGN for the opportunity and platform to share my Dreams of a City project.

If you missed it (understandable—this was honestly the earliest I’ve woken up in… a long time), you can watch my interview on WGN News’ YouTube (embedded above) or/and on Facebook (embedded below).

Monday, September 13, 2021

Cultural Reset

I was interviewed live on WBEZ! Thank you to WBEZ Reset for having me (for the second time!) and to anchor Susie An for chatting with me about Dreams of a City.

For those who might’ve missed it Wednesday morning, you can listen to my radio interview here.

Friday, August 20, 2021

Well Read

I’m in the Chicago Reader! Thank you to writer Tony Peregrin for this wonderful interview about my labor of love, Dreams of a City.

Online version.

You can read the article about my public art/postcard project online, or/and you can pick up the August 19 issue in print (it’s free!) at Reader distribution boxes throughout Chicago. It’s also available as a PDF.

Pages 10-11 of the print version.

Also, here’s a moment of zen: A time lapse of me putting stamps on a hundred handmade Dreams of a City postcards.

And a heads up to those of you who’ve been subscribed to Artists on the Lam using the Feedburner email subscription service / Blogger’s FollowByEmail widget: Alas, apparently it’s being (has been?) discontinued. I’ll look for an alternative, but in the meantime, I’ll be manually emailing these blog posts to you. And thank you, of course, for being such loyal followers—many from the very beginning!

Stay safe out there.

Wednesday, August 4, 2021

Stop in the name of

I got interviewed by Fstoppers about my iPhone 5s photography!

Thank you to writer Ali Choudhry for this feature article!

In case you missed it in May: PetaPixel interviewed me as well, and here’s when I launched my new online gallery of my mobile photography.

Also viewable, of course, is DECAHEDRON: 74 artists, over 350 works of art across all media, celebrating the 10th anniversary of Artists on the Lam. View the virtual exhibition here.

Continue staying safe, everyone.

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