The Aesthetics of Research is an ongoing initiative dedicated to exploring how resources shape and inform artistic practice across disciplines--from the tangible (print & electronic media, studios/workspaces, supply sources)  to the intangible (workshops, tutorials, creative communities),  With a slant toward non-traditional, indie, and underground art forms, the initiative seeks to connect artists to both resources and each other, forming a  thriving network of similarly minded creatives.   

Currently in residence at the Columbia College Chicago Library. the AofR works to develop targeted projects (exhibits, displays, programming) with an eye toward showcasing the Library's wealth of materials, engendering discussions about how those materials inspire creative work, and building interest and enthusiasm toward the collection and its possibility for artists.    The AofR also seeks to form bridges and connections to related resources on campus and within the greater Chicago arts community, placing the Library at the center of a vast multidisciplinary network available to artists and other creative professionals.  The project explores the concept of libraries as a creative/ intellectual space where learning happens, not only in the traditional academic structure via collaborations with faculty, but also individually driven through curiosity and self-study, as well as peer to peer, community member to community member.     


Housed on the first floor of the Columbia College Library @ 624 S. Michigan, the Aesthetics of Research exhibit features a rotating selection of artwork throughout the year.  Incorporating a variety of art & media genres, the exhibit is unique in that it features not only the finished work, but a list of sources used in the formation of that work in the form of a creative bibliography.

The 1st Floor also features vending machines that vend 2-D and 3-D takeaways (both originals works and reproductions)  as well as the Zine Exchange, which connects indie publishers and zinesters within the Columbia College community by offering a space to share and trade their wares.


In addition to our exhibits, The Aesthetics of Research hosts a variety of events, including readings, discussions, lectures and workshops focused on the role of libraries in the creative process and community-building. 

We also participate in a number of Chicago community and Columbia College campus events, as well as foster shenanigans designed to make library spaces and resources a hub for creative endeavors--including scavenger hunts, vending machines for creative work, hidden art intiatives, & more...

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