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Groundbreaking art: 'Immersive Van Gogh' arrives in Chicago
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Groundbreaking art: 'Immersive Van Gogh' arrives in Chicago

Engaging works of Post-Impressionist art will be seen in sweeping and innovative ways beginning next week in Chicago.

The "Immersive Van Gogh Exhibition" will fill the rooms at Lighthouse ArtSpace Chicago Feb. 11 through Sept. 6. Lighthouse ArtSpace is the new venue housed in the historic Germania Club Building in Chicago's Old Town neighborhood.

"We are excited to bring this exhibit to Chicago," said Maria Shclover, co-producer with Irina Shabshis, of "Immersive Van Gogh."

Shclover said the exhibit had a tremendous response from art fans when it visited Toronto last year in the middle of the pandemic.

"We hope to bring joy to Chicagoans with the exhibit. It's a unique and an emotional experience," Shclover said. The Chicago showing of the art display, which is a walk-through experience, marks the U.S. premiere of the exhibit.

"Immersive Van Gogh" features digital displays of Dutch painter Vincent Van Gogh's striking works. The works will surround visitors on all sides and be projected on the walls, ceiling and floor of the venue. It blends various art - physical art, music, light and digital technology. It also appeals to viewers' imaginations and emotions, the producer explained.

"It thrusts the viewer into the artist's mind," Shclover said. She added it's quite an engaging way to experience art.

"We actively use about 60 of Van Gogh's works of art and about 400 different images (in different ways)," she explained.

"It's a merging of technology, music, animation and storytelling," Shclover added.

Artistic creator Massimiliano Siccardi designed "Immersive Van Gogh" while Luca Longobardi composed the music for the exhibit. Music accompanying the exhibition is a mix of piano and electronic sounds.

Shclover said they looked for the "right city" to debut the exhibit in the U.S. "And we looked for a building for a long time." They then saw the Germania Club Building.

"We absolutely fell in love with the building. It's an historic building with wonderful details," she said.

The venue, Lighthouse ArtSpace Chicago, is actually debuting on the artistic scene in Chicago with this Van Gogh exhibit. Shclover said it will later house a variety of immersive art shows, performance art and other events.

"It will be a place where people will spend a lot of time," Shclover said.

In addition to the exhibit, there will be a cafe and gift shop on the venue's premises.

The first block of tickets for "Immersive Van Gogh" sold out very quickly. Tickets are currently on sale for viewing through Sept. 6.

Shclover said she's long been a fan of Van Gogh's work. She also loves immersive art and said she experienced her first immersive art display during a past trip to Paris.

"It's a new way to experience art," she said, adding it's something for the whole family.

Strict safety measures have been put in place for the exhibit which requires social distancing and wearing of masks.

Gallery: Portage print shop owner shares his art with Myers art students

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Entertainment Editor/Features Reporter

Eloise is A&E Editor and a food, entertainment and features writer for The Times, subjects she has covered for over two decades in and around the Region. She was the youngest of eight in a Chicago household filled with fantastic cooks and artists.

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