Art openings and After Hours on Chicago Ave. coming to West Town

Sitting in between Wicker Park and Ukrainian Village, West Town is the archetypal middle child - resourceful, adaptable and inventive but also easy going. It’s a diverse, friendly neighborhood that exemplifies Chicago’s cheerful can-do attitude and it’s a wonderful place to nose around shops and fantastic eateries. February proves no different.

Make a plan to stop at Vertical Gallery as it opens Cities, Towns and Color Fields by Nate Otto, on Feb. 7. The very first show of the Chicagoan’s work exhibits more than 30 original works on wood and canvas that demonstrate a genuinely individualistic style. Otto’s pieces intimate his life in this urban setting with flourishes of street art, graphic design, advertising and even color field painting. Expect to experience large scale paintings on canvas that use multiple layers of paint as well as 20 wooden panels.

The display is up only through the month of Feb. but you can meet the artist at an opening reception on Saturday, Feb. 7, from 6-10 p.m. Vertical Gallery is located at 1016 N. Western Avenue.

Near the end of the month on Feb. 27, After Hours on Chicago Avenue returns to West Town. Local shops open their doors to the community and visitors to peruse goods, of course, but also to socialize with drinks and other goodies. According to the neighborhood Chamber, among the more than 30 participating businesses are: Ad Hoc, Study Hall, Paperish Mess, Tarnish, Sprout Home, Permanent Records, Epic Spices and Seek Vintage. The event takes place between 6 and 9 p.m. and a good place to start is Chicago Ave. and Ashland.