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Tate hosts first major UK exhibition by US artist

JMU Journalism

February 2020

By Lydia Baggs

Revisiting the turbulent time of political and social crisis in the United States is the focus of work by one of America’s most influential artists, and his creation is now here in Liverpool.


Deepika Padukone to Theaster Gates, artists who were honoured at the 26th Annual Crystal Award in Davos

Times Now News

January 2020

By Debasish Chakraborty

Chicago-based artist and the professor at the University of Chicago in the Department of Visual Arts, Theaster Gates was honoured at the 26th Annual Crystal Award in Davos, for his leadership in creating sustainable communities.

Theaster Gates explores Japanese philosophy and Black identity on Afro-Mingei 12″

Vinyl Factory

January 2020

By Anton Spice

Ambient, gospel and jazz influences combine in live recording with The Black Monks.

'I Thrive in a Certain Kind of Complexity.' Artist-Musician Theaster Gates on the Transformative Power of Art


December 2019

By Linda Luscombe

Theaster Gates is swooping around and through the audience like a low-flying eagle circling a lake. It’s dark, but a band is playing Grace Jones covers, he’s a very good roller-skater, and he trusts the smoothness of the floor he installed. Occasionally he straightens a bit and shouts, “This is not a conference!” and sometimes “This is not a f-cking conference!” 

The Theaster Gates project Black Monastic is all about preserving black art and culture in all forms

Chicago Tribune

November 2019

By Britt Julious

This moment has been a long time coming for music director, artist, and producer Peter CottonTale.

“There’s been those types of songs you hold on to no matter what. And you’re like, this is so good, and I don’t know what to do with it,” CottonTale began. “If you can relate in that aspect, I took all those songs … and I just finished all of those.”

Review: Theaster Gates, preaching at the altar of consumerism

L.A. Times

October 2019

By Sharon Mizota

Theaster Gates wants to give you the shirt off his back. Rather, he wants you to buy it, upcycled as art.

Theaster Gates on selfish energy and hopeful architecture

Financial Times

October 2019

By Jan Dalley

The multitalented artist lays out his vision at Frieze’s annual Art & Architecture Summit in London.

Theaster Gates On Why London Was The Perfect Place To Host The Third Prada Mode


October 2019

By Ellie Pithers

For an artist so preoccupied with fiction, fashion is a relatively undiscovered country for Theaster Gates. 

Theaster Gates is taking over The Store X, 180 The Strand with his Black Image Corporation

The Spaces

October 2019

By The Spaces Team

Frieze London kicks off next week and to coincide artist Theaster Gates is taking over The Store X, 180 The Strand with a super-size installation and live-events programme – the latest instalment of his Black Image Corporation.

Theaster Gates brings Black Image Corporation to The Store X, 180 The Strand


October 2019


Featuring The Vinyl Factory Radio and a programme of talks, screenings, and live performances presented by Prada Mode.

Chicago artist Theaster Gates’ Black Image Corporation installation will open in London as part of Prada Mode during Frieze week on October 2-3.

Prada to open Prada Mode during Frieze Week Including Installation by Theaster Gates

FAD Magazine

September 2019

By Mark Westall

Prada presents the third iteration of Prada Mode, a travelling social club with a focus on contemporary culture that provides members a unique art experience along with music, dining, and conversations.

‘Theaster Gates: Assembly Hall’ Review: Exploring a Checkered Past

Wall Street Journal

September 2019

By Peter Plagens

It’s a slow weekday at the Walker Art Center, and only a handful of visitors are in the installation by Theaster Gates (b. 1973), the black “social practice” artist and University of Chicago visual arts professor. Part art exhibition and part sociology research project, Mr. Gates’s “Assembly Hall” is an essay on American racism.

Theaster Gates, Beth Rudin DeWoody, and Laura Dvorkin Debut Show About Black Interiority in Chicago


September 2019

By The Editors of ARTnews 

On Wednesday evening in Chicago, guests previewed “In the Absence of Light: Gesture, Humor and Resistance in the Black Aesthetic,” an exhibition at Stony Island Arts Bank presented by the Rebuild Foundation in partnership with Expo Chicago, ARTnews, and the Beth Rudin DeWoody Collection. The show was organized by artist Theaster Gates in collaboration with Beth Rudin DeWoody and Laura Dvorkin.

Theaster Gates opens new solo exhibition at Walker Arts Center

The Mac Weekly

September 2019

By Malcolm Cooke

The idea of archiving is essential to Theaster Gates’ new exhibit at the Walker Art Center, Assembly Hall.

At Walker, a black artist's complex look at beauty, stereotypes, racism

MPR News

September 2019

By Euan Kerr

Victoria Sung, assistant curator at the Walker Art Center, thinks carefully on how to describe Theaster Gates’ work.

"I would say he is a world maker," she said.


‘It’s Like This Little Time Capsule’: Theaster Gates Explains How His Collecting Obsession Inspires Him in Making New Art

Artnet News

September 2019

By Caroline Goldstein

For artist Theaster Gates, the act of creating artwork doesn’t necessarily start out with making the object itself. Often, it’s an a matter of uniting artifacts, repurposing found materials, and then exhibiting them from a new perspective.

Chicago artist Theaster Gates takes care of all the forgotten stuff

Star Tribune

September 2019

By Alicia Eler

With a sprinkle of "Theaster dust," a Chicago artist finds deeper meanings in discarded objects at the Walker. 

Theaster Gates Will Stage Chicago Show of Works by Black Artists From Beth Rudin DeWoody’s Collection


August 2019

By Andrew Russeth

“For me, always, the frustration is I’d like more of the work to get out there,” said Beth Rudin DeWoody, discussing her preference for sharing the artworks she collects with the public over having them in storage or at home.

The second recipient of the “Visions of the City” grant is artist Theaster Gates

Obayashi Foundation

July 2019

Press Release  

In 2017 the Obayashi Foundation launched a new grant program, “Visions of the City—Obayashi Foundation Research Program.” Based on the recommendations of our five-member selection committee, every two years this program awards a research grant to an artist from Japan or abroad endowed with an abundance of creative ideas and a strong interest in cities. 

Renaissance man has a vision for Albuquerque’s Rail Yards

Albuquerque Journal

July 2019

By Adrian Gomez

Albuquerque has the ability to determine its future. 

And, at the same time, build up its artistic community.

“It’s clear that the richness of Albuquerque is its people and the spaces,” artist and activist Theaster Gates told a group in Albuquerque last week.

‘It’s True Musical Abstraction’: Artist Theaster Gates on His Plan to Break New Barriers in Sound Art at the Park Avenue Armory

Artnet News

June 2019

By Taylor Dafoe

The artist will lead his Black Artists Retreat at the Park Avenue Armory's Drill Hall in October. 


Theaster Gates Makes Visible the Hidden Layers of Cities


June 2019

By Jasmine Weber

The collection of never-before-showcased objects materialize the underpinnings of urban livelihoods: commerce, culture, ancestry, trauma, which, particularly for Black Americans, are inextricably entwined.

A DJ booth brings life to the CTA station on 95th

Chicago Tribune

June 2019

By Natalie Wade

“When did they start doing that?” exclaimed a woman entering the CTA Red Line station at 95th Street. Before her stood the station’s latest addition, AESOP (An Extended Song of Our People), a DJ booth. Like most people walking to and from the platform, she can’t help but linger for a moment, letting her shoulders sway to the beat. The speakers, although loud, do not feel invasive or migraine inducing as the sound bounces along grey walls to spread a jazzy, hip-hop infusion throughout the station, and a feeling of warmth on a summer day that felt too much like early fall.

Review: “The Black Image Corporation” at the Martin Gropius Bau, Berlin

Blouin ArtInfo

June 2019

By William

The cover of Ebony magazine’s February 1968 issue consists of a montage of images of paintings by Charles Alston, Hughie-Lee Smith, Romare Bearden, William H. Johnson, Merton D. Simpson, and Edward Mitchell Bannister beside the headline “Evolution of Afro-American Art: 1800-1950.” Above these images, in the upper righthand corner, is another headline: “Was Abe Lincoln a White Supremacist.” This copy of Ebony sits atop a pile of others in one of the vitrines in “The Black Image Corporation,” an exhibition curated by Theaster Gates and running at the Martin Gropius Bau until July 28.

Theaster Gates ‘Afro-Mingei’

FAD Magazine

May 2019

By Mark Westall

In the title of the show, the term ‘Afro’ refers to both African-American culture as well as to its iconic hairstyle, re-appropriated during the 1960s and 1970s by Black post-civil rights leadership as a symbol of Black identity and empowerment. The Japanese term ‘mingei’, coined by the philosopher and cultural figure Soetsu Yanagi, along with potters Shoji Hamada and Kanjiro Kawai, denotes folk or craft objects made by local, often unknown craftsmen. For Yanagi, craft challenged conventional ideas of art and beauty since it evolved from traditional practices where the divisions between art, philosophy and religion had merged or disappeared.

At Colby, a cabinet of hidden wonder

The Boston Globe

May 2019

By Murray Whyte

In 2017, when Theaster Gates had a solo exhibition at the National Gallery in Washington, D.C., he brought with him as much of Chicago as he could. In the gallery, Gates placed a hunk of gymnasium floor cobbled from the ruins of razed schools; one side of the peaked slate roof of the city’s demolished St. Laurence Church, sifted from its debris; and a watchtower-like structure filled with back issues of the defunct Ebony magazine, a flagship of the Chicago-based Johnson Publishing, which for 70 years had chronicled black life in America with a celebratory and sympathetic approach.

Artist Theaster Gates helps renovate Edward Durell Stone building

Architect's Newspaper

April 2019

By Ali Oriaku

After five years of planning and construction, Chicago-based architecture and planning firm Farr Associates and artist Theaster Gates have dramatically transformed a 60-year-old dormitory at the University of Chicago into a state-of-the-art research center and student hub, known as the Keller Center.

Images of black America held in cabinets, and hands, at Colby

Press Herald

April 2019

By Bob Keyes

The installation by artist-in-residence Theaster Gates allows viewers to pick up framed photos from the archive of Jet and Ebony magazines.

Theaster Gates, back in Chicago, delivers art in gallery show, brand-new CTA station

Chicago Tribune

April 2019

By Steve Johnson

In the span of a few days earlier this month, Theaster Gates was walking through his new gallery show just hours before it opened, explaining to visiting friends and journalists the thinking behind, for instance, one of its centerpieces, his reclaimed neon sign from a Rothschild Liquors store to which he has added the neon legend, “Mama’s Milk.”

Theaster Gates presents art installations at Red Line’s 95th Street station

Curbed Chicago

April 2019

By Sara Freund 

The final two art installations at the Red Line’s 95th Street station were unveiled Monday morning. The two pieces by artist Theaster Gates are part of the massive terminal overhaulwhich wrapped up in January.

Can Artist Theaster Gates Help Bridge a Town-Gown Divide?

City Lab

April 2019

By Zach Mortice

A school at the University of Chicago is opening itself up to the South Side through public policy and architecture, with help from Theaster Gates.

Theaster Gates' Amalgam exhibition at Palais de Tokyo explores social histories of migration


April 2019

By Sofia Lekka Angelopoulou

chicago-based artist theaster gates explores social histories of migration and interracial relations in an entirely new project at palais de tokyo in paris. marking his first solo museum exhibition in france, the project examines a specific episode in american history as its point of departure.

UL Interview: Theaster Gates on Building Communities by Breaking Rules

Urban Land

March 2019

By Justin Arnold

Internationally acclaimed artist and urban planner Theaster Gates, whose rise to prominence began with his use of art and culture to revive underserved neighborhoods in his hometown of Chicago, was named the 2018 recipient of the ULI J.C. Nichols Prize for Visionaries in Urban Development at the Institute’s 2018 Fall Meeting in Boston.

Collector Qiao Zhibing's delayed Tank Shanghai museum opens on West Bund waterfront

The Art Newspaper

March 2019

By Lisa Movius

A massive Theaster Gates exhibition is in the works for March 2020.

Photography and the "Black American" of the Johnson Publishing Company

First Arte

March 2019

By Marika Lion 

For the first time in the United States, Theaster Gates "Facsimile Cabinet of Women Origin Stories" an exhibition that contains about 3000 images from the archive of the Photograph from the archives of the Johnson Publishing Company. Until 8 September 2019 at the Colby Museum of Art, Waterville, Maine.

Theaster Gates illuminates the dark history of Maine’s interracial exiles

Document Journal

March 2019

By Ann Binlot

For his first solo museum exhibition in France at Palais de Tokyo, Theaster Gates explores America’s dark forgotten past through the interracial exile of Malaga Island.

“Nothing is pure in the end… A sea of wood, An island of debate. Can an exhibition start to shift the negative truths of the history of a place?” 

Theaster Gates and The Black Monks return with live jam on Black Madonna Press


March 2019


Fusing the twin legacies of spiritual jazz and Chicago house.

Artist and musician Theaster Gates has announced the second release on his Black Madonna Press label in collaboration with The Vinyl Factory.

Artist Theaster Gates headlines 2019 Chicago Architecture Biennial's new list of participating designers

Chicago Tribune

March 2019

By Blair Kamin

Chicago artist Theaster Gates, who turned a decrepit neo-classical bank building into a cultural hub called the Stony Island Arts Bank, will be among the participants of the 2019 Chicago Architecture Biennial that opens in September.

Theaster Gates, MASS Design Group among list of Chicago Architecture Biennial contributors

The Architect's Newspaper

March 2019

By Sydney Franklin

Theaster Gates, MASS Design Group, Wolff Architects, as well as Forensic Architecture and Invisible Institute are among the first wave of contributors announced for this fall’s 2019 Chicago Architecture Biennial. The show, titled …and other such stories, will be an expansive look into global projects that delve into how architecture relates to land, memory, rights, and civic participation. The initial list of participants, announced last week, features 51 artists, collectives, architects, and researches from 19 countries—only half of the soon-to-be full lineup of participants.

Raising the Cultural Bar on Campuses

The New York Times

March 2019

By Kerry Hannon

Colby College Museum of Art, which was founded in 1959, comprises five wings, nearly 8,000 works, and more than 36,000 square feet of exhibition space. A current exhibition, “Theaster Gates: Facsimile Cabinet of Women Origin Stories,” includes nearly 3,000 images from the Johnson Publishing Company archive. Founded in 1942, Johnson Publishing recorded the lives of black Americans for more than 70 years through the magazines Ebony and Jet.



Theaster Gates at the Palais de Tokyo: an elegant, sensitive and poetic exhibition


March 2019

By Olivier Cena

In 2015, in Venice,  a video installation managed to bring the Biennial out of the boredom in which the mediocrity of the exhibited works plunged it.

Facsimile Cabinet of Women Origin Stories will make it’s U.S. debut at the Colby Museum of Art

Kennebec Journal and Morning Sentinel

March 2019

By Stacy Blanchet

Theaster Gates’s Facsimile Cabinet of Women Origin Stories will make it’s U.S. debut Tuesday, March 12, at the Colby Museum of Art, 5600 Mayflower Hill Drive, in Waterville.

Monument for the expelled residents of Malaga Island

NRC Handelsblad

March 2019

By Sandra Smallenburg

The new exhibition 'Amalgam' by Theaster Gates revolves around a small American island with a loaded history of racial purification. "The beauty of mixed forms, that's what this work is all about."

Remains of slavery, according to Theaster Gates, at the Palais de Tokyo

Le Figaro

March 2019

By Valérie Duponchelle

This is the first museum exhibition in France of Theaster Gates, conceptual king of the African-American scene. In the Palais de Tokyo, slavery relives via the remains invented of a "false archeology".


Theaster Gates explores the troubling history of a coastal community forced out of home


March 2019

By Amy Verner

For his first exhibition in France, artist Theaster Gates has dredged up a dark and largely unknown fragment of American history. It concerns Malaga, a small island off the coast of Maine where, until 1912, a self-sufficient maritime community lived in relative isolation. 

Prada asks Ava DuVernay and Theaster Gates to lead diversity efforts after blackface backlash

CNN Business

February 2019

By Taylor Nicole Rogers

Prada has tapped "Selma" director Ava DuVernay and artist Theaster Gates to advise the Italian fashion house on diversity issues after the company released a holiday collection featuring blackface imagery.

Theaster Gates first solo museum exhibition in France

FAD magazine

February 2019

By Mark Westall

In an astonishingly short space of time, Chicago-based artist Theaster Gates has incubated compelling new models for legacy building, social transformation, and making art. Encompassing sculpture, painting, ceramics, video, performance, and music, his art both derives from and sustains ambitious urban renewal projects, creating hubs and archives for black culture, which serve as catalysts for discussions on race, equality, space, and history.


A Conversation with Theaster Gates; Archinect Sessions Episode #136


February 2019

By Paul Petrunia

This week on Archinect Sessions we’re sharing our inspiring conversation with Theaster Gates. For those of you who aren’t already familiar with Theaster, you’re in for a treat. Theaster Gates often refers to himself as a potter, and while it’s true that he is, through years of training and practice, he’s also an extremely talented multidisciplinary artist, urban planner and community-focused social activist. 

Prada needed help dodging racial missteps. It called in Theaster Gates

Crain's Chicago Business

February 2019

By Lisa Bertagnoli

The Chicago-based artist and Hollywood director Ava DuVernay have been tapped to co-chair the Milan fashion house's new Diversity & Inclusion Advisory Council.

Theaster Gates on how his new show was inspired by the eviction of 45 people from an island in Maine

The Art Newspaper

January 2019

By Anna Sansom

The US artist Theaster Gates has taken the eviction of a mixed-race community from a small island in Maine as the starting point for his first solo exhibition in France, opening this month at the Palais de Tokyo.

Theaster Gates’ “Amalgam” at Palais de Tokyo, Paris


January 2019


For his first solo show in France, Theaster Gates will showcase a new project, pursuing the exploration of social histories of migration and interracial relations, which will be on view at Palais de Tokyo, Paris, from February 20, 2019, to May 12, 2019.

Theaster Gates Is a Toast of the Fashion and Art Circuit

New York Times

December 2018

By Ruth La Ferla

The image was arresting. Screened on a wall of the Freehand Miami hotel, it showed a bikini-clad woman playing volleyball on the beach. The blowup itself was not extraordinary, except that its subject was black.

Theaster Gates hits the floor at Park Avenue Armory

The Art Newspaper

December 2018

By Ruth Lopez

The Chicago artist will mill a portion of the period wood for the $4m project to replace the historic New York building's floor.

Prada and Theaster Gates explored black identity Art Basel Miami Beach

CNN Style

December 2018

By Samantha Tse

At this year's Art Basel Miami Beach, Prada launched Prada Mode Miami, a pop-up members-only club that featured a tightly edited program of art, music and dining.

Theaster Gates and His Band, The Black Monks of Mississippi, Play Miami


December 2018

By Whitney Mallett

Thursday night in Miami, artist Theaster Gates and his band the Black Monks of Mississippi performed at the pop-up club Prada Mode.

Kanye West, Venus Williams, Emma Roberts, and Theaster Gates Party With Prada in Miami


December 2018

By Nick Remsen

The pop-up club’s visual tone was set through an “intervention”—essentially a gallery-like design takeover—by the artist Theaster Gates, whose work was seen throughout. (He currently has a show at the Fondazione Prada in Milan, on view until January 13.) Gates also performed later on Thursday evening with the Black Monks of Mississippi Live, tucked away in a low-lit lounge full of hushed onlookers.

Starry (RED) Charity Auction in Miami Brings in $10.5 Million to Fight HIV/AIDS


December 2018

By Annie Armstrong

On Wednesday night, the Zaha Hadid-designed Moore building in Miami’s Design District played home to a starry (RED) Auction curated by artist Theaster Gates and architect David Adjaye alongside the rock star Bono to raise money for the fight against HIV/AIDS.

In a Pivot From Social Practice, Theaster Gates Designed a Private Club With Prada for Art Basel Miami Beach

artnet news

December 2018

By Sarah Cascone

Who’s the man in charge of designing the latest hot spot at this week’s Art Basel Miami Beach? None other than Chicago social practice artist Theaster Gates, who has created a site-specific installation for Prada Mode, the luxury brand’s new members-only night club that is blending contemporary art, music, and dining.

Locust Projects Turns 20: Remembering Its Most Memorable Exhibits

Miami New Times

December 2018

By Minhae Shim Roth

"Theaster Gates: Soul Manufacturing Corporation." November 10 - December 21, 2012. Dennis Scholl calls Theaster Gates’ performance and installation Soul Manufacturing Corporation “my personal favorite.”

Theaster Gates, the Chicago-based Cross-Disciplinary Artist and Urban Visionary, Has Joined Gagosian Gallery

Culture Type

December 2018

By Victoria L Valentine

CHICAGO-BASED ARTIST Theaster Gates is now represented by Gagosian gallery. Over the past decade, Gates has gained global renown for his unique social practice focused on preservation, restoration, and archiving. Constantly traveling, he has captivated the international art world with his vision for transforming communities through art, cultural development, and social engagement.

To Theaster Gates, Art And Redevelopment Are One And The Same


December 2018

By Joe Gose

For the last several years, Theaster Gates has combined his urban planning and artistic talents to revive impoverished neighborhoods in his hometown of Chicago while preserving local heritage and black history. 

Gagosian to Represent Chicago-Based Artist Theaster Gates


November 2018

By Andy Battaglia 

Gagosian gallery will represent Theaster Gates, with plans for a first show with the Chicago-based artist in New York in spring 2020.

Bono, David Adjaye and Theaster Gates discuss their Red auction

Financial Times

November 2018

By Rachel Spence

The unassuming façades of London’s Kentish Town do not whisper that celebrities hide within. Yet this is where photographer Rankin has his studio. It is also where I find my triumvirate of interviewees: architect David Adjaye, contemporary artist Theaster Gates and rock legend Bono.

Speaking Volumes: Best New Art Books

Vanity Fair London

November 2018

By Honey Luard

Pure, uncompromising and unapologetic artist books are all too rare in mainstream publishing. To overcome this, the irrepressible Chicago-based artist Theaster Gates has set up his own imprint, Black Madonna Press, as just one more weapon in an arsenal at the service of his socially engaged ventures. 

Artists Theaster Gates, Trevor Paglen, Tania Brugera, Hank Willis Thomas, Rashid Johnson, encourage communities to be civically minded through through the billboards

Document Journal

October 2018

By Caroline Christie

Ahead of November’s midterms, artists will run billboards in every US State plus Washington, D.C., and Puerto Rico, that, according to its organizers, is the “largest creative collaboration in US history.”

Artist, Planner Theaster Gates Is 2018 Recipient of ULI J.C. Nichols Prize for Visionaries in Urban Development

Urban Land

October 2018

By Justin Arnold

Internationally acclaimed artist and urban planner Theaster Gates, whose rise to prominence began with his use of art and culture to revive underserved neighborhoods in his hometown of Chicago, has been named the 2018 recipient of the ULI J.C. Nichols Prize for Visionaries in Urban Development. Gates was awarded the prize by Michael Spies, ULI governing trustee and 2018 Nichols Prize jury chairman, during the opening general session of the 2018 ULI Fall Meeting.

JPMorgan Chase Gives $300,000 to Theaster Gates’s Rebuild Foundation in Chicago


October 2018

By Alex Greenberger 

As part of a three-year plan to give $40 million in grants to organizations in Chicago’s South and West Sides, JPMorgan Chase has made a $300,000 philanthropic investment in the Rebuild Foundation, a nonprofit run by the artist Theaster Gates that facilitates free arts programming and various initiatives primarily intended to reach the black community in the South Side.

David Adjaye and Theaster Gates to Curate (RED) Auction with Bono at Design Miami

Architectural Digest

October 2018

By Carly Olson

Add another item to your Design Miami calendar—Sotheby's is bringing its high-design offerings to the Florida's buzziest city this December. AD100 architect David Adjaye and artist Theaster Gates—in collaboration with musician Bono—have curated the third Sotheby's (RED) Auction to benefit the fight against AIDS. Sotheby's first two (RED) auctions in 2008 and 2013 raised a total of $68 million, which funded HIV/AIDS programs in Africa. Proceeds from this sale will support community-driven AIDS programs in Africa as well as the Rebuild Foundation, a Chicago-based cultural development organization founded by Gates.


Stony Island Arts Bank: Reclaiming community and black history, through the arts

Chicago Sun Times

July 2018

By Maudlyne Ihejirika

Sitting on the back of a leather armchair that once occupied the offices of Johnson Publishing Co., artist Theaster Gates gestures toward a two-story wall of books that also belonged to the Ebony/Jet publisher.

'Johnson Publishing' exhibit shows off company's design flair — without a plexiglass museum case

Chicago Tribune

July 2018

By Steve Johnson

In the title of “A Johnson Publishing Story,” the new exhibition looking at the longtime powerhouse of African-American print media, the indefinite article is key.


Theaster Gates: 'The male, Caucasian world as we've known it is over'

The Guardian

July 2018

By Steve Rose

Whether he’s saving condemned buildings, playing jazz or redistributing Frankie Knuckles’s record collection, the artist wants to spread the word about the black experience – and point the way to salvation

Theaster Gates salutes the spaces where Ebony and Jet happened

Chicago Sun Times

July 2018

By Bill Stamets

“A Johnson Publishing Story,” an exhibition that opened in Chicago last week, memorializes the iconic tastes of the late John and Eunice Johnson, pioneers in African-American publishing, fashion and cosmetics. Chicago artist/developer Theaster Gates has installed select furnishings from the Johnson Publishing Co. offices in the Ebony/Jet building that opened in 1972.

Theaster Gates and the art of the Black Madonna

The Economist

June 2018

By Prospero

The artist has delved into magazine archives to create powerful images of “the everyday black woman”

Theaster Gates: ‘There’s no better Madonna than my mother’

The Art Newspaper

June 2018

By Helen Stoilas

Using the $100,000 he won as part of the Nasher Sculpture Center’s 2018 Nasher Prize, Theaster Gates bought himself a printer. Not your ordinary inkjet printer—not even a cutting-edge 3D printer—but a German-made, Heidelberg Windmill printing press.

Theaster Gates: ‘Please Support Artists Who Live in Your Cities’


June 2018

By Andrew Russeth

At a dinner last night at an event space in a sprawling garden north of Basel’s main drag that was given in honor of his current exhibition at the Kunstmuseum Basel, after heartfelt speeches from his dealers Jay Jopling and Shaun Regen, the artist Theaster Gates bounded up to the microphone and launched into a section of “It’s My Party” as everyone put down their forks and knives and the volume of the speakers was adjusted so that everyone could hear him.

Theaster Gates cuts performances direct-to-vinyl on VF Lathe at Black Madonna exhibition in Basel

Vinyl Factory

June 2018

By Anton Spice

Gates launches new label Black Madonna Press with The Black Monks Of Mississippi EP.

Artist and archivist Theaster Gates will explore the cult of the Black Madonna across two venues of the Kunstmuseum in Basel this summer. Turning two floors of the museum into a space of creative production, Gates has set up a temporary sound studio and printing workshop where live performances and interventions by the artist will take place.

Theaster Gates Encourages Colby Seniors to Create Abundance and Share It

Colby News

May 2018

Acclaimed contemporary artist Theaster Gates told Colby seniors to use their brains and hands to make the invisible visible, create an abundance worth sharing, and change the world for the better.

Colby College appoints artist Theaster Gates to new three-year residency

Portland Press Herald

April 2018

By Bob Keyes

Theaster Gates, a visual artist with a background in urban art, will serve as a visiting artist and director of artist initiatives at the Lunder Institute for American Art at Colby College in Waterville. Sharon Corwin, director of the Colby College Museum of Art, announced the appointment Wednesday afternoon.

Theaster Gates Joins Colby College’s Lunder Institute for American Art

The New York Times

April 2018

By Peter Libbey

Theaster Gates, a Chicago artist known for his engagement with urban issues, is coming to Waterville, Me., a city with a population of roughly 16,000.



May 2017

Artist Theaster Gates and the University of Chicago intend to build a new $1.5 million park located along Garfield Boulevard, which would include footpaths for pedestrians, areas for outdoor performances and movie screenings, and new lighting and fencing.

Using Discards to Build Art (and Rebuild a City)

The New York Times

March 2017

By Hilarie M. Sheets

“It’s a super-interesting moment to be at the National Gallery, where the question of what it means to be an American, and what kind of American are you, has a new kind of resonance,” said Theaster Gates, the sculptor, installation and performance artist and urban interventionist, whose exhibition “The Minor Arts” opened there this month in Washington.

Theaster Gates Starts Artisan and Craft Workforce Training Program in Chicago


November 2016

By Robin Scher

Today the Chicago-based artist Theaster Gates, operating under the banner of his nonprofit Rebuild Foundation, announced the launch of Dorchester Industries, a self-described “workforce training and apprenticeships initiative for un- or underemployed people across the South Side of Chicago.”