chi: a few hours more

airport lake michiganWow! Lake Michigan done in Maya Lin style.

Janene put it together before I did, and this is over security in Midway. What a great statement, and what a great way to start a weekend, in one of the most underrated city–travelwise– in the United States.

From Friday night to Sunday, a short weekend in a great architectural city, as well as a good place to spot museums. Dinner Friday at Lao Hunan. Seems like they are making a transition with the name and menu, but not with the taste. E voilà!

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Saturday is done. Sunday, we went over to Pilsen to see the National Museum of Mexican Art. I am sorry we didn’t stop to eat, the smell of grilled chicken getting off at Damen, made your mouth water. Art trumps food! And the museum is always interesting, forward and worthwhile. A morning trip, spread itself into 2-1/2 hrs. worth. All of it good.

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selenaA tribute to Selena Gomez, complete with Jack in the Box wrappers!

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The National Museum of Mexican Art is free, and well worth a donation. It is young in feel and provides viewers with fresh ideas about art. It has that same mentality as the Museum of Contemporary Art, also in Chicago.

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pilsen 5On the way back to the Damen Station take the first left and catch some local murals!

art will never keep us apartAt the Art Institute, we saw friends and caught two shows in the new wing.

Somewhere around the year 0, Statue of Young Dionysos (above) was created. This was quite a feather in the museum’s cap. His face almost reflects contemporary cartoons.

art ins sculpHow would you like this for the display of your work?

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Charles Ray Sculptures were set in probably one of the most dramatic settings in years. I don’t know if the impact came from the sculpture or the interaction with the site. Geez, strike a pose.

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art ins 2Even people began to become poseurs with the sculptures. Maybe they should have added Madonna’s Vogue to the event.

Making Place: The Architecture of David Adjaye starts off as on-site models of architecture of David Adjaye. It is pure form, and a little dry. True appreciation by real architects and designers who are checking out the beauty of form and interaction to site specific design. Not exactly for the novice. And then the second room, and the work really comes alive.

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Texture and color come into play. Color becomes even more evident, as his work is touched by the tragedy of a young, black male architecture student murdered in England, racially motivated. And the context comes to play, somewhat. But we get to see the work, see models in full color with photos onsite. Several in the DC area. Another good reason to be in DC.

harlem 1

harlem2Lower income housing for a Harlem site.

Someone said something like, oh two ugly blocks for housing. The building has so many nice things. The front is broken planes, so that there is not a sense of flatness, and a bit of individuality in the little side windows, which doesn’t give that boring, conformity. A nice terrace several stories up, in a common area. A beautiful surface. And from a photo, a sense to the site, as it juts above a treed area. Very nice. Not the old housing project thing common in the 90s.

va libraryLibrary in the DC area in Virginia

chi architectureAnd why not? I am in a premier city for architecture, among other things.

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