Hold on to Your Deep Dish... Chicago is Full of New Art and Design
There’s all kinds of art these days along the Chicago River. (Photo: Paul Velgos)
By Melissa Feldman
Chicago — known for its odd pizza and its perennially under-performing Cubs — nonetheless excels when it comes to architecture and design.
Stunning examples of modern and historical architecture — along with great new contemporary design — are found across the city.
Top on the list is the Art Institute of Chicago, whose modern wing, designed by Renzo Piano, opened in 2009. Currently on view through January is “Chicagoisms,” a survey exhibition including historic photos and models juxtaposed with contemporary responses to five significant moments in the city’s history, such as the Great Chicago Fire of 1871. Included are nine international architecture and design firms including Bureau Spectacular, DOGMA, and UrbanLab.
A view of the Art Institute of Chicago’s Modern Wing from Millennium Park. (Photo: Charles G. Young, Interactive Design Architects)
The skyscraper is synonymous with Chicago’s skyline and last year, a 52-story landmarked Mies van der Rohe tower became the Langham Chicago (from $475), with floors 2 to 13 converted into a five-star hotel. Designers include van der Rohe’s grandson, Dirk Lohan, who re-envisioned the lower lobby to capture the spirit of Mies’ modernist oeuvre with sleek surfaces and neutral-colored upholstery.
The Langham’s Travelle Lounge and Bar, by New York’s Rockwell Group, features leather sofas and ottomans reminiscent of a scene from “Mad Men.” With a river view below, ordering a prime beef burger and a glass of rose is the perfect Saturday night.
Related: Thursday Night: Chicago
Floors 2 to 13 of the Langham were turned into a five-star hotel last year. (Photo: Handout)