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Julia Klein, Wall Hanging , 2012. Wire; 17 × 24 in.
Sue Bosniak, Bird Painting, 1933. Paint on canvas; 10 × 13 in.

12  Description

I made this looped wire weaving in 2012, shortly after wire became a primary material in my practice. Over the last 8 years, it has been settling into itself as a thing in the world.

12b  Description

This is a painting by my great-grandmother, Sue Bosniak. Sue was a rabbi’s wife (her husband was Jacob Bosniak, the head rabbi of the Ocean Parkway Jewish Center in Brooklyn); the mother of two daughters; and a painter. Being the wife of the rabbi of a large synagogue was/is a job in and of itself, and it was not the norm for someone in her position to give as much weight as she did to an artistic pursuit, alongside her many other responsibilities. However, Sue (and Jacob) made it a priority for her to develop her work, and each week she left the neighborhood for a painting class—she did this for years, in a sustained relationship with the same teacher. I wish i knew more about her training, her teacher, what her “studio practice” was like (did she have a period of time carved out for her painting?), the evolution of her work (I can piece this together a little from the dates of her paintings)… there is a lot to be curious about. This painting was made when my grandmother was 11. Sue’s paintings hang today in the homes of her grandchildren and great-grandchildren, though I imagine they represent only a small portion of her production.


Julia Klein lives and works in Chicago. She has exhibited work at venues including the Museum of Contemporary Art Detroit; Vox Populi (Philadelphia); Shirley Fiterman Art Center at the Borough of Manhattan Community College (NYC); and Material, International Museum of Surgical Science, Threewalls, and Hyde Park Art Center, all in Chicago. Klein was a resident at the Terra Foundation Summer Residency in Giverny, DEPE Space (MOCAD), Vermont Studio Center, and the Sitterwerk Kunstbibliothek (St. Gallen, Switzerland). She participated in the 2018-19 Chicago Jewish Artists Fellowship and is currently a HATCH resident at the Chicago Artists Coalition. She received a BFA from the University of Michigan and an MFA from Bard College. Klein is a member of Tiger Strikes Asteroid Chicago and she runs Soberscove Press, which produces books about art and projects with artists.