Millennium Park Marks 10th Anniversary with Events & New Installations
BY LAURA MILLER
Millennium Park’s July 2004 opening transformed the Loop and today, the 24.5-acre park remains a top attraction for city visitors as well as long-time Chicago residents. This summer marks the 10th anniversary of Millennium Park and celebrations will take form through a series of free events and exhibitions including musical performances, films, simulcasts and documentaries shown on an outdoor, 40-foot LED screen, family activities, workouts and more.
World-renowned Spanish artist Jaume Plensa, creator of Crown Fountain, has also contributed to the Park’s 10th anniversary celebration with a new installation of four large-scale portraits located in the South Boeing Gallery (just east of Crown Fountain) and at the Michigan Avenue / Madison Street entrance. Jaume Plensa: 1004 Portraits is meant to complement and expand upon the story of the 1000 LED portraits of Chicago residents that highlight the Crown Fountain.
The new installation's enormous portraits of young girls convey serene expressions with closed eyes, and offer a soothing counterbalance to the chaos and noise of the city. The faces are elongated and the portraits have slightly skewed proportions. The white sculpture placed at Michigan and Madison, Look Into My Dreams, Awilda, is made of resin and stands an impressive 39 feet tall. The other three cast iron sculptures located in the South Boeing Gallery, Laura, Paula, and Ines, measure 20-23 feet tall.
The new works are on loan from the artist and are co-presented by Millennium Park Foundation with the Chicago Department of Cultural Affairs and Special Events, and the installation is sponsored by The Boeing Company, with support from the Richard H. Driehaus Foundation.
Plensa’s work is also currently on display at Richard Gray Gallery, where the artist is represented. Private Dreams is on view at the gallery through September 27, 2014 and features eight new sculptures from Plensa’s iconic series of heads. The sculptures stand six feet tall and are comprised of a range of materials including bronze, glass, and for the first time, volcanic basalt.
June 18-December 2015
Jaume Plensa: 1004 Portraits
Millennium Park's South Boeing Gallery and at Michigan & Madison park entrance