Jeanette Andrews

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Jeanette Andrews is an artist, magician and researcher. Andrews’ work focuses on the development of interactive magic and sensory illusions via performance, sculpture, installation and audio. Over 25 years of specialized study and technical training in parlor and sleight of hand magic has now afforded her a distinct perspective on crafting experiences with nuanced psychological underpinnings, direction of attention and inattention, the creation of surreal visuals and designing/building objects that function completely differently than they appear. Her research-based process centers around phenomenological philosophy, contemporary cognitive science, and physics. Her work is rooted in highlighting astonishing aspects of everyday life via moments of the seemingly impossible to create a lived phenomenology. Themes of pieces have included invisibility, impossible objects, the relationship between scent and magic, unseen communication, and how illusions can construct reality. Andrews works closely with museums and galleries to recontextualize magic within the cultural arts and explore this craft as a performance art medium. She has presented numerous commissioned works with the Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago, including her 2020 work “Invisible Museums of the Unseen,” which was later commissioned as a site-specific work for the Quebec City Biennial. Further site-specific works for numerous museums and galleries include the Elmhurst Art Museum, Birmingham Museum of Art and International Museum of Surgical Science. Andrews is also an acclaimed speaker, presenting with the Cooper Hewitt, Chicago Ideas, Fortune 500 companies, and universities and conferences across the country. She has been an artist in residence for Culture Lab LIC, High Concept Labs and The Institute for Art and Olfaction. Illusion is Andrews’ life’s work and her performances have been praised by the Chicago Tribune, PBS, and the New York Times.