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An Escape From Holiday Cheer

By Justin Sondak in Arts & Entertainment on Dec 21, 2005 8:48PM

When the holiday spirit has become too much, when you’ve had it with the retail hordes on Michigan Avenue, you’re through with cutesy cartoon characters, and you swear you’ll flip if you hear another celebrity Christmas album, it’s time to step back and indulge your darker and more prurient interests. The holidays are oh so temporary, but art endures, even if these nice and naughty exhibitions are closing soon.

Indeed, the holiday season wouldn’t be complete without A Bloody Portent of Possible Erotic Chaos at the West Loop’s BSD Gallery. This tribute to the often-overlooked Winter Solstice is a multimedia celebration of paganism opening tonight. A disclaimer: Chicagoist cannot be held responsible if the experience blows your mind.

betweenthesheets.jpgColumbia College graduate students provide much to think about in Between the Sheets, a hard-core look at sexually provocative works. Student artists explore the blurring of fine art and pornography and its potentially troublesome effects on… hey now, eyes over here… artists and their audience. For what it’s worth, their press release promises a stimulating experience.

pretty corpses.jpgYou might think Goth is sooo over, but the artists showcased at the U of C’s Renaissance Society insist it has matured. Images featured in All the Pretty Corpses range from the outright shocking to the mildly disestablishmentarian, collectively drawing from mystical forces and pop culture preconceptions. Time’s running out: you may have missed the Opening Reception and Death Metal Pizza Party, but the exhibit stays open through Saturday.

"A Bloody Portent of Possible Erotic Chaos" opens tonight at 6pm at the BSD Gallery, 1319 W Lake St, and shows through December 29. More information at 773-227-8308.

“Between the Sheets” continues at Columbia College’s Hokin Annex, 623 S Wabash, 1st Floor, Mondays – Fridays through January 6. More information at their website.

“All the Pretty Corpses” continues at the University of Chicago’s Renaissance Society, 5811 S Ellis Ave through Saturday. More information at

Images via Columbia College and the Renaissance Society.