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Best art exhibition about architecture in an architecturally significant building

Bronzeville, Culture & Nightlife No Comments »

Jeff Carter at Mies van der Rohe’s Crown Hall, IIT

Jeff Carter’s sculptures of buildings, assembled from IKEA parts, played with the famous dictum “form follows function,” which influenced a score of Chicago architects. The sculptures were perfectly sited in Mies’ Modernist temple of Crown Hall.

Best of Chicago 2011

Best architectural restoration

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Mies van der Rohe’s Lake Shore Drive Apartments
Louis Sullivan’s cast-iron filigree adorning Carson’s was at the top of the list until it was boarded up again once Carson’s vacated. Mies, though, never fails to impress. Following on the heels of the successful Crown Hall restoration, Krueck & Sexton Architects and Gunny Harboe were asked to do it again. The Lake Shore Drive apartments have so far been treated with a shiny coat of black paint and windows have been returned to their perfection of shiny transparency. The master of minimalist severity rises again.

Best of Chicago 2007

Best architectural restoration

City Life, Streeterville No Comments »

Mies van der Rohe’s Lake Shore Drive apartments

Louis Sullivan’s cast-iron filigree adorning Carson’s was at the top of the list until it was boarded up again once Carson’s vacated. Mies, though, never fails to impress. Following on the heels of the successful Crown Hall restoration, Krueck & Sexton Architects and Gunny Harboe were asked to do it again. The Lake Shore Drive apartments have so far been treated with a shiny coat of black paint and windows have been returned to their perfection of shiny transparency. The master of minimalist severity rises again.

Best of Chicago 2007

Best of the Best: Chicago Federal Center

City Life, Loop No Comments »

Chicago Federal Center
Perhaps Mies van der Rohe’s finest work in Chicago, Federal Center is a study in simple perfection, captured in the Miesian dictate “less is more.” The formal, deceptively simple black vertical boxes of the Dirksen Building and the Kluczynski Building are juxtaposed with the horizontal Loop Post Office and the sleek flat expanse of the plaza itself. Calder’s Flamingo provides the perfect splash of color and asymmetry. It’s at its best at night, when the space lights up in glorious vacant urbanity. Sadly, ugly concrete barricades surround the plaza since 9/11, serving as mementos of our loss, not only of security, but also of simple beauty.

Dearborn at Jackson

Best of Chicago 2002