What We're Reading: 9/7/21


As George Pullman’s business grew, he opened a factory south of Chicago. Next to the factory, Pullman built a company town, which he named for himself. (Courtesy Pullman National Monument)

A Look at the Pullman National Monument Ahead of its Labor Day Weekend Opening

Some people say that walking through Chicago’s Pullman neighborhood is like traveling back in time.

On Labor Day weekend, a new visitor center in the old clock tower administration building will open and debut an exhibit exploring the pivotal role the community played in American history.

“This is America’s first planned industrial community and so there’s a lot to be learned here,” said Teri Gage, superintendent of Pullman National Monument.

Six years ago, President Barack Obama declared the Pullman neighborhood a national monument for its historic significance. 



Theaster Gates shows off Rebuild Foundation’s progress in Greater Grand Crossing

Artist and incubator Theaster Gates has been building up the Greater Grand Crossing neighborhood piece by piece over the years with spaces for artists and residents to coexist with culture and beauty.

His Rebuild Foundation birthed the Stony Island Arts Bank, where thousands of artist portraitures of former President Barack Obama hung, and which provided space for historical items to keep the conversations going about social justice. Rebuild also created a place where art and housing mesh in the Dorchester Art + Housing Collaborative, made from a former public housing project.

Via Chicago Tribune


Chicago’s West Loop: A Guide for Eating, Drinking, Walking and Gawking

CHICAGO’S WEST LOOP neighborhood feels like a separate city—an enclave of art deco warehouses and low-story brick buildings facing a wall of skyscrapers across the I-90 Expressway. Once the site of an open-air 19th-century produce market on Randolph Street and home to meatpackers along Fulton Market two blocks north, the neighborhood is now a booming development zone. To preserve its distinct architectural heritage, Chicago has granted landmark status to 142 properties in the area, now christened Fulton-Randolph Historic Market.

Via WSJ (free link)


Secrets and lies: the role of restorers in art crime

The arrest of the British antiques restorer Neil Perry Smith in July is not the first instance of a restorer becoming embroiled in crime. Smith was extradited to the US and charged on 29 counts for his alleged cleaning and repairing of antiquities for Subhash Kapoor, the dealer accused of leading a conspiracy to loot and offload an estimated $143m worth of ­antiquities from Asia onto the New York art market. Another British restorer, Richard Salmon, was similarly accused of helping to cover the artefacts’ true origins. Neither Salmon nor Smith could be reached for comment.

Via The Art Newspaper 


Art Basel Just Created a $1.6 Million ‘Solidarity Fund’ to Calm Uneasy Exhibitors

Art Basel is making a big investment to address dealers’ mounting concerns about the Delta variant’s impact on its flagship fair, which is due to open its doors in just two weeks.

In a letter sent to exhibitors Monday and reviewed by Artnet News, Art Basel global director Marc Spiegler and head of European business and management Andreas Bicker announced that the fair has committed CHF 1.5 million ($1.6 million) to a “onetime solidarity fund” designed to mitigate the financial risk of participation. Every gallery will have the option to benefit from the fund if they choose to do so. 

Via Artnet