Looking for A Distanced Way to See New Art? Two Public Installations Unveiled
By GINNY VAN ALYEA
It's snowing outside. While there may be some festive walks in the snow in your future, you're more likely to be spending time indoors for the time being. We have learned of some new art that offers a reason to visit with a friend outdoors. So go ahead and plan a walk to see two new art installations on view in River North and in Edgewater. Some art is up temporarily while other projects will stay up long term.
River North/Gold Coast
In River North the group behind the Bush Temple from FLATS has recently installed colorful commissioned works from 23 artists from Arts of Life and Johalla Projects in the street-facing windows of the building. These artworks were created over the course of three months in Arts of Life's studios. Art of Life, which is marking 20 years as the first program in Chicago to provide meaningful vocational opportunities in the arts for adults with intellectual and developmental disabilities. Their studio serves as an alternative day program and creative epicenter.
The Bush Temple is located on the border of River North and The Gold Coast. Comprised of two residences, a historic French Chateauesque building on Chicago Avenue and a newly constructed 15-story tower on Clark Street. The Bush Temple pulls its name from the original building’s history as the headquarters of the Bush & Gerts Piano Company, of which there is a restored piano on display in the communal lobby.
Johalla Projects, which has produced a large variety of exhibitions over the last decade including large-scale art installations and staged murals, partnered with Arts of Life on this project. The Bush Temple is located at 810 N Clark (108 W Chicago Ave.)
On the north side, the Edgewater Chamber of Commerce (ECC) presents Reflections: An Edgewater Art Experience through October 31. The experience is comprised of a series of outdoor art installations with more than 20 works that can be seen on Broadway, Bryn Mawr, Clark, Granville and Thorndale. A detailed map for self-guided tours is available HERE. QR codes can be found near each art installation, which when scanned, will link viewers to information about the art, artists, and participating locations. There are no admission fees to Reflections, but online donation options are available.
Reflections features local street artists, professional muralists, mosaic world masters, fine artists and others displayed on storefronts, theatres, businesses and walls throughout Edgewater. To create this immersive Edgewater art experience, ECC has partnered with existing art initiatives supported by the Lytle House, Urban Art Restart, Paint the City, the Chicago Mosaic School, and the 48th Ward.
“Without the ability to produce events for the neighborhood as in past years, we wanted to create a program that brought people outdoors to explore Edgewater in a new way,” says Christina Pfitzinger, Executive Director of the Edgewater Chamber of Commerce. “The power of art is that it brings together the unique voices of the community as evident in these pieces which range from solemn to celebratory. We hope that participants will discover places they may have overlooked and take a moment to reflect.”
This program highlights small businesses, theatres, available properties and the Edgewater neighborhood at a time when travel around the city is limited. Reflections allows residents the opportunity to explore the art already present in the neighborhood, seek out new places and spaces, and connect to communities as reflected through art.
To learn more about the mix of temporary and permanent exhibitions on view in Edgewater, click here.