Downtown Chicago has several parks along the lakefront, many of which I will be detailing over the summer. Basically the whole lake front is covered in parks, but the most grand is Millennium Park.
Millennium Park is too large to discuss in just one post and it has so many unique features. Some are unique in a too modern way (I will talk about the Gargoyles at another date), but my favorite is "The Cloud Gate", or as we locals call it "The Bean".
The Bean is a giant polished steel lima bean shaped object that reflects the whole sky line with fun-house mirror distortions. On the underside of the sculpture is the spoon-like belly called the omphalos. This 12 foot high mirrored indentation seems to toss light and images helter-skelter. I always get a funny sense of vertigo when I stand underneat and look up. Anish Kapoor, the artist, designed it to look like liquid Mercury.
"What I wanted to do in Millennium Park is make something that would engage the Chicago skyline…so that one will see the clouds kind of floating in, with those very tall buildings reflected in the work. And then, since it is in the form of a gate, the participant, the viewer, will be able to enter into this very deep chamber that does, in a way, the same thing to one's reflection as the exterior of the piece is doing to the reflection of the city around."
I am usually not a huge fan of modern art, but this piece has captured my imagination. Perhaps it is because how accessible it is to the public or the fun memories of taking friends and family to it. The top picture is from Millennium Park's web site. The others were taken a year and a half ago. That's my hubby and my friend trying to climb the bean below and me and my hubby posing over to the left. Children of all ages definitely can have a great time playing around of this Bean.
My Town Monday is the brain child of Travis Erwin. For other locations to visit please go to Travis' site here.
Monday, February 16, 2009
at 6:11 AM