Lori Waxman, of the Chicago Tribune, wrote:

“I very nearly missed seeing one of the most beautiful installations of the year.

This despite the fact that Paola Cabal’s “Analemma” fills two of the only walls in the Hairpin Arts Center, a newish multiuse space located on the second floor of a historic building whose ample windows overlook the Diversey- Milwaukee-Kimball avenues intersection in Logan Square. Cabal spent a quarter of a year recording the traces left on these walls by the passing sun, eventually fixing their diffuse delicacy in place via meticulously applied layers of paint just a few shades lighter than the walls themselves.

My almost oversight is less about a failure to look carefully 
than assumptions regarding what is permanent and what is 
ephemeral, what is empty and what is full. Such
expectations are repeatedly overturned by “The Presence of Absence,” a remarkable group exhibition curated by Dave and Debra Tolchinsky and including work by a refreshingly unpredictable handful of emerging and established local artists, Cabal among them. The others are Robert Chase Heishman with Brendan Meara, Melika Bass, Christopher Baker, Laurie Palmer, Katarina Weslien and Inigo Manglano- Ovalle.

So subtle as to flirt with disappearance, “Analemma” could be the show’s quintessence if it weren’t for the fact that just about every artwork here is deeply served by the curatorial theme and vice versa…”


A native of Bogotá, Colombia, Paola Cabal has lived in Chicago since 2001. Trained in observational realism, Cabal continues to implement responsive looking in her increasingly diverse practice, which includes site-specific installation, collaborative work, and more recently curating and writing in addition to her ongoing engagement with more traditional drawing media. Alongside her individual practice, Paola Cabal is an active member of the three-person collaborative (ƒ)utility projects.

Her work has been written about in Time Out Delhi, The Chicago Reader, and Café Magazine, among others, and is discussed in the book “Buddha Mind in Contemporary Art”, in an essay by Carol Becker. Paola has exhibited in Bogotá, Colombia, New York, Omaha, Charleston, and Ft. Lauderdale, in addition to numerous exhibitions in Chicago. She was visiting co- mentor for the 2010 “WhyNot Place” residency programme in New Delhi, India and, in 2006, was awarded the prestigious Richard H. Driehaus Foundation Individual Artist Award.

Cabals’ work can be seen in two permanent installations to date: “Moving in Place”, in the office of the Dean of the School of the Arts at Columbia University, NY, and “Analemma”, at the HairPin Arts Center in Chicago, IL

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