In this post, I’ll summarize parts of my Chicago trip that would feature public art, great architecture and scenic parks. From neoclassical Greco-Roman columns to glassy modern box houses, you’ll find a lot to see.
I started at Millennium Park, where I saw the popular “Bean,” or what the artist preferred to be called as the Cloud Gate. I sat down for a while, gazing at the marvelous giant while numbers of people took pictures around and underneath it.
If you look closer on its mirror shell, you can see the clouds moving left to right on its reflective surface. I pondered upon the sculpture’s name and yes, in a way it is a “gate” in a sense that we see things differently: a reality slightly distorted, reflecting the people, buildings and the sky. It made me think of a “magic bean” from the fairytale Jack and the Beanstalk – probably from too much listening to Sondheim’s Into the Woods.
“There are giants in the sky,” Jack says after coming down from the cloud lands. I say, there are giants in Chicago. Literally, I loved the glass skyscrapers that reflect the blue sky. The ornate historic buildings along Michigan Avenue were very fine and detailed. Millennium Park is a great vantage point, and you’ll find another giant structure there (an amphitheater or pavilion). On the south western side you’ll find tall water monoliths with faces.
Strolling down south, you’ll find the Art Institute of Chicago. Take some time to look at the smaller public sculptures around the garden area.
Each area takes at least 30 minutes, so by now it’s lunch time. Go towards the city and find Lou’s Malnati’s for deep dish pizza. After ordering, I recommend taking the 35 mins baking time for another tour!Take the bus or head southeast towards Museum Campus, and you’ll find museums and another vantage point of tall buildings as well as Soldier Field.
Printers Row is around the area: historic publishing houses as well as universities close by. I also visited the Harold Washington Public Library – it has 8 floors and has an interesting architecture, compared to LA Public Library’s art deco style.
To be continued on the next post! Please comment below if you’d like me to elaborate on anything 🙂