About Alternate Assembly: Environmental Impact in the Era of Pandemic

Launching January 2021

EXPO CHICAGO presents Alternate Assembly: Environmental Impact in the Era of Pandemic, a digital proxy for rigorous in-person discourse over three days (January 21–23, 2021) in the form of an engaging hybrid online event. This amalgamation, hosted on the exposition’s newly launched microsite (program.expochicago.com) will feature a series of scheduled programs with leading curators, artists, and scholars to address how ideas in contemporary art can contribute to rethinking our environment within the era of pandemic. 

Approaching the dual theme of environmental impact, as both a natural ecology and constructed institutional space, Alternate Assembly interrogates the future of our (art)world landscape. In response to our current moment, the thematic of this public program will center on artists and theorists that challenge us to think differently about our environment—from projects that explore water rights, to theories on viruses and virality, as well as notions of sustainable societies, and the multi-layered impacts felt from environmental racism. 

As a complement to these live-streaming conversations, hosted on the Alternate Assembly microsite, select film screenings by leading contemporary artists will be shown, illustrating the new ways of thinking that artists have proposed thinking about our environment, ranging from the poetic to the activist. Concentrating on these issues explored by contemporary artists alongside museum and non-profit leadership and art criticism published in THE SEEN, this program calls upon EXPO CHICAGO’s commitment to the necessary discourse across commercial and non-commercial sectors in support of ongoing inquiry.

Alternate Assembly: Environmental Impact in the Era of Pandemic will be presented in collaboration with the Malmö Art Museum and the exhibition Sustainable Societies for the Future.


EXPO CHICAGO, The International Exposition of Contemporary & Modern Art, features leading international galleries alongside the highest quality platform for contemporary art and culture. In 2019, EXPO CHICAGO hosted more than 135 leading international exhibitors at Navy Pier’s Festival Hall. The exposition draws upon the city’s rich history as a vibrant international cultural destination, while engaging the region’s contemporary art community and collector base. 

The city of Chicago has proudly hosted a global contemporary and modern art exposition for nearly forty years and serves as the site of the first international art fair in the Americas. Since its inception, EXPO CHICAGO has remained dedicated to supporting local, regional, and international arts communities, with strong regional support throughout the Greater Midwest, both US coasts, and maintained a growing international commitment from Europe, Asia, and Latin America.