5 Questions: William Conger

© William Conger

William Conger, living and working in Chicago IL,  is an abstract painter whose work has been exhibited extensively in galleries and museums in the US with more than thirty one-person exhibitions since 1958. 

His most recent one-person exhibitions were at Zolla Lieberman Gallery, Chicago IL,  2017; 2016; Bruno David Gallery, St.Louis, MO, 2016; Vendome Gallery,  NYC, 2014.

His work has also been included in many invitational group exhibitions since 1958, which include national travel museum exhibitions.

More info on William can be found below.

1. What’s been keeping you up at night?
I try not to stay up too late because I like to get up early, around 5:30 am.  But like others who are still sane at midnight,  I worry about incompetent leaders inviting chaos and taking the world into a new Dark Age.

2. What’s the coolest thing you’ve seen or heard lately?
I’m reading Strange Tools: Art and Human Nature, by Alan Noe (2015)  and this sentence stays in mind:  “The aesthetic sense operates over a much wider domain than art does.”

3. What’s the most exciting thing you’re working on right now?
My new painting is going in a totally unexpected direction, seemingly with ease.

4. If you could add anyone, alive or dead, to your team, who would it be
There are dozens of great thinkers and artists I’d like to have around, but choosing one person,  I’d choose my wife Kathy who has  been my greatest supporter and muse for 55 years.

5. When the movie is made of your life, what will it be called?
Abstract.

© William Conger

Museum collections of William’s work include The Art Institute of Chicago, The Museum of Contemporary Art, Chicago, The Wichita Museum of Art, The Madison Museum of Contemporary Art, WI, The Illinois State Museum, and many university art museums plus public and corporate collections.  He has completed several public art commissions in Chicago. 

Published reviews and commentary on his paintings appear in ArtNews, Art in America, ArtForum, Arts, Art Criticism, Art Papers and in numerous newspapers, catalogs and books.  A large retrospective of William Conger’s paintings 1958-2008 was presented at the Chicago Cultural Center in 2009.  His grants include a Pollock-Krasner Grant in 2010; Illinois Arts Council Grants (2010; 2013);  he was elected a Distinguished Artist at the Union League Club of Chicago. His art papers, together with an extensive oral history, are held at the Archive of American Art, Smithsonian Institution, Washington, DC.   

His published commentary on art has appeared in Critical Inquiry, Linguistic Sciences, White Walls, and other periodicals and books. 

He is professor emeritus of art theory and practice at Northwestern University. 

For full career information see:  www.williamconger.com