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        News — Laura Catherwood

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        Laura Catherwood 'All Things Stirring'

        Laura Catherwood 'All Things Stirring'

        Vertical Gallery, Laura Catherwood follow the trail of ‘All Things Stirring’

        Vertical Gallery is very proud to present 'All Things Stirring,' the latest solo exhibition from Chicago-based painter and illustrator Laura Catherwood.

        ‘All Things Stirring,’ which runs June 7-29 at 2006 W. Chicago Ave. #1R, transports viewers into the heart of the fractured-folklore realm mapped out via Catherwood’s previous Vertical Gallery outings ‘The Book of Yielding’ (2022) and ‘Hearsay’ (2023). Its roughly two-dozen oil paintings and pencil drawings offer an immersive walking tour through an alternate reality where flora, fauna and fantasy collide in unexpected and uncanny ways.

        “I want to soothe people through my art, and when I’m feeling distressed in my own life, I take walks. Walking in nature gets you closest to remembering that you’re just one small part of an interconnected world, and that eventually you will be re-absorbed into it. For me, nature is a refuge, and I want ‘All Things Stirring’ to put you there,” Catherwood explains. “‘Book of Yielding’ felt like a book. Those paintings and drawings were meant to resemble nature history diagrams and vintage nature illustrations. These new paintings and illustrations are slightly larger than lifesize, and offer a different perspective, like you’re navigating through tall grass and branches.” 

        ‘All Things Stirring’ gathers inspiration from Taoism, which emphasizes living in harmony with the Tao, the natural way of the universe. “Taoism is another kind of walk. It translates to ‘the way’ — it’s the route, or the trail,” Catherwood notes. “Taoism is about impermanence and letting go. It was a big inspiration for titling the pieces in the show. The title ‘All Things Stirring’ itself comes from the Tao Te Ching: ‘While all things are stirring together, I only contemplate the return. For flourishing as they do, each of them return to its root.’ The point is that you’re here right now. You’re on the walk. All the things stirring is the experience of life, and you have to enjoy it.”

        Catherwood abandoned a career in neuroscience research to pursue a life in art, and after completing her studies at the School of Representational Art and Atelier Eftimov, in 2016 she began exhibiting her work in group shows, producing her first solo exhibition ‘Jalan Jalan’ two years later. In addition to her Vertical solo exhibits, Catherwood has contributed to many of the gallery’s group shows. She has also had a solo showcase in Portland, and shown in exhibitions in Miami, Philadelphia, Portsmouth and New Zealand.

        Laura Catherwood
        'All Things Stirring'
        June 7 - 29, 2024
        Opening reception: Friday, June 7th, 5:00-8:00pm
        Vertical Gallery, 2006 W Chicago Ave #1R

        Vertical Gallery Celebrates 10 Years

        Vertical Gallery Celebrates 10 Years

        Vertical Gallery is excited to present two special shows celebrating our 10-Year Anniversary! 

        Opening first on March 11 at Vertical Project Space:
        March 11 - April 16: Vertical Gallery 10-Year Anniversary Show Part 1 at Vertical Project Space featuring: Chris Uphues, Rae Denise (Racheal Scotland), AJ Ainscough, Laura Catherwood, Van Dam One, Goosenek, Melissa Villarreal, Angel Onofre, Matt Zuska and Jordan Ferguson.

        Vertical Project Space is located at 2006 W Chicago Ave #1R (entrance in alley off Damen). Open weekends 12-5.


        Opening on April 1 at Vertical Gallery:
        April 1 - 29: Vertical Gallery 10-Year Anniversary Show Part 2 at Vertical Gallery featuring: AlexFace, Martin Whatson, Flog, 2CHOEY, Hama Woods, Sergio Farfan, Collin Van Der Sluijs, Mr. Kreme, Mau Mau, and Pipsqueak Was Here!!! 

        Vertical Gallery is located at 1016 N Western Ave. Open Tues-Sat 12-6.

        Thank you to everyone that has visited and collected work from us over the past 10 years. And special thanks to all of the artists that have shown with us over the past 134 shows! 

        Email us at if you have any questions.

        Laura Catherwood ‘Book of Yielding’

        Laura Catherwood ‘Book of Yielding’

        Vertical Gallery is very proud to present ‘Book of Yielding,’ a new solo exhibition from Chicago-based painter and illustrator Laura Catherwood.

        ‘Book of Yielding,’ which runs from March 12 to April 10 at Vertical Project Space’s West Town location (2006 W. Chicago Ave. #1R; enter via the alley off Damen Ave.), features close to two dozen pencil drawings and oil-painted panels — melancholy, delicately textured portraits that transport viewers to a mysterious and magical reality of Catherwood’s making, where flora, fauna and human feeling coalesce in unexpected and unsettling ways.

        The title ‘Book of Yielding’ plays on the dual meaning of the word “yield,” Catherwood says. “A yield can be a fruit you receive, but it can also mean to submit, or to give something up. That summarizes the show: it’s telling you that life is essentially a series of gains and losses. The pieces illustrate that dynamic in a way that’s meant to be comforting — to encourage acceptance.”

        ‘Book of Yielding’ also embraces the narrative promise of its title. The individual pieces function together much like the elements of a book, Catherwood says.

        “The pencil drawings look like the illustrations you might see in a dictionary or encyclopedia, and some of the paintings look like botanical drawings or natural history drawings, but with my illustrative twist,” she explains. “The work is not simply representational, however. These aren’t creatures as they appear in nature. They look like field drawings, but of a more emotional landscape. The overall narrative may seem a little strange and unfamiliar, but it touches something inside people… some buried sadness, or maybe something they’ve never even put words to. I want them to feel comfort — that it’s natural to feel that way.”

        Both art and science have exerted enormous influence over Catherwood’s life. As a child, she split her time exploring the prairie preserve near her family’s home and staying indoors drawing, painting and reading, and her lifelong fascination with the natural world inspired her to study molecular and cellular biology at the University of Illinois. “I was intending to go into neuroscience research, and I worked in several labs,” Catherwood says. “Eventually I realized I’d always taken painting for granted, and when I didn’t have time for it any more, it hurt.” So after completing her degree, she decided to pursue a career in art, studying at the School of Representational Art and Atelier Eftimov.

        Catherwood began exhibiting her work in group shows in 2016, producing her first solo exhibition ‘Jalan Jalan’ two years later. Her work has since appeared in solo and group settings across Chicago, including the 2021 Vertical group shows ‘Atomic Number 13’ and ‘Water the Plants!’ In addition, Catherwood has exhibited in cities including Minneapolis; Lakewood, Colo.; and Alhambra, Calif.

        Laura Catherwood
        ‘Book of Yielding’
        March 12 – April 10, 2022
        Opening weekend March 12 & 13, noon-5pm
        Vertical Project Space
        2006 W. Chicago Ave #1R