Great Ideas of Humanity

Saturday, Feb 22 – Apr 19, 2020

78 E. Washington
Chicago, IL 60602

View Online 


Between 1950 and 1975, Chicago-based Container Corporation of America ran a campaign heralded as one of the best in advertising history, Great Ideas of Western Man. The world has changed since 1975, but great ideas are timeless.

Our response, Great Ideas of Humanity, celebrates the globalization and cross-pollination of ideas, societies, and cultures. Like the original series, a committee meets, gathers “great ideas,” and commissions artists or designers to create visual responses. The work does not advertise a product, but rather an ethos—of the museum, of the community, of Chicago—to make the world a better place through thoughtful design.

Two public artworks, one of women in the arts and one of Latinx icons, inspired this iteration of the project which features the work of Chicago students. Great Ideas of Humanity: Passing the Torch celebrates the work of new artists, underrepresented thinkers, and Chicago communities.