Since the mid 1980's Dan Peterman has combined innovative strategies of local engagement and activism with national and international art projects, exhibitions and installations. Peterman explores intersections of art and ecology, frequently focusing on networks of recycled, or discarded materials that function interchangeably as stockpiles, sculpture, functional objects, and critiques of environmental oversight and neglect. In the early 1990's Peterman developed a building and cultural site located in a contested urban boundary between the affluent University of Chicago and a low-income neighborhood to the south. This project, known simply as the building, fostered diverse cultural, educational, and small business initiatives--and became an influential model of cultural activism and urban placemaking that helped stimulate further innovative cultural developments on Chicago's Southside. After a fire in 2001 destroyed the building, Peterman rebuilt the facility, and co-founded the Experimental Station, a 501c-3 non profit organization that continues to provide independent cultural programming and infrastructure for local enterprises.

He is the Founder of Blackstone Bicycle Works--now an ongoing youth education program of Experimental Station, and Founder of Monk Parakeet, a flexible experimental art project and curatorial platform co-located with Peterman Studio and Experimental Station.

Peterman is Professor in the College of Architecture and the Arts at the University of Illinois at Chicago.  His works have been exhibited at Documenta 14 in Athens and Kassel, Germany, Museum of Contemporary Art, Chicago, IL; Venice Biennial, Italy; Van Abbe Museum Eindhoven, NL, Kunsthalle Basel, Basel Switzerland; Smart Museum of Art, University of Chicago, Chicago, IL; among other venues.


This site hosts a selection of past and ongoing projects by Dan Peterman. Projects may not appear in chronological order or be represented here in their entirety. Explanatory texts accompanying projects are derived from diverse sources as noted, including catalog essays, reviews, interviews and artist's project statements. Image rights, unless otherwise noted are property of Dan Peterman and Peterman Studio.