CLOUD GATE CHICAGO

CLOUD GATE CHICAGO

ArtistAnish Kapoor YearBuilt 2004–2006 TypeStainless steel Dimensions10 m × 13 m × 20 m (33 ft × 42 ft × 66 ft) LocationMillennium Park, Chicago, Illinois, United States

Artist: Anish Kapoor
Year Built: 2004–2006
Type Stainless steel
Dimensions 10 m × 13 m × 20 m (33 ft × 42 ft × 66 ft)
Location Millennium Park, Chicago, Illinois, United States

Cloud Gate, a public sculpture by Indian-born British artist Anish Kapoor, is the centerpiece of the AT&T Plaza in Millennium Park within the Loop community area of Chicago, Illinois, United States. The sculpture and AT&T Plaza are located on top of Park Grill, between the Chase Promenade and McCormick Tribune Plaza & Ice Rink. Constructed between 2004 and 2006, the sculpture is nicknamed “The Bean” because of its bean-like shape. Made up of 168 stainless steel plates welded together, its highly polished exterior has no visible seams. It is 33 by 66 by 42 feet (10 by 20 by 13 m), and weighs 110 short tons (100 t; 98 long tons).

Gail's photo upshot from inside the Beane

Gail’s photo upshot from inside the Bean

(more…)

CONNECTICUT TO CHICAGO

CONNECTICUT TO CHICAGO

Marriott Courtyard Bistro

Marriott Courtyard Bistro

It took us about twelve hours by car to reach Mishawaka, Indiana. The Marriott Courtyard there was our overnight stop. We were impressed with the cleanliness, comfort and hospitality of the Marriott, the hosts and Gjorgy Baumann, Manager, charming, I might add. We were told they will be renovating soon and will have new everything. I thought the place was pretty terrific already. They even had a Bistro for light dining and breakfast. But our favorite to dine is Papa Vinno’s, an Italian foodery, as good as any in New York City, right across the street. After a delightful breakfast at the Bistro, Chicago was less than two hours from Mishawaka.

Lake view from our Chicago hotel room

Lake view from our Chicago hotel room

Tom had a business conference to attend for the week. I used the time to work on my writing. We visited family once. When Tom was done with his business we took the time to go to Millennium Park. That was the highlight of our trip. Here are some of the photos.

June 23rd big moon from our hotel room over the lake

June 23rd big moon from our hotel room over the lake

The Buckingham Fountain is a taxi ride away.

Buckingham Fountain in Chicago

Buckingham Fountain in Chicago

Then we went over to Millennium Park.

Millennium Park hosts

Millennium Park hosts

This was a water park within Millennium Park

This was a water park within Millennium Park

Sculptures of all sorts, architectural concert area by Frank Gehry. The Bean . . .

The Bean

The Bean (More to come about this amazing scuplture)

I will talk about this and my other photos next week. Too many for today.

Gail and one of the sculptures

Gail and one of the sculptures

Have you been to Chicago? What’s your favorite there? Has anyone written a romance there?

FRANK LLOYD WRIGHT

FRANK LLOYD WRIGHT

Mr. Wright strolling the campus with his cane but without his cape. Frank Lloyd Wright spent the last two decades of his life overseeing the largest single-site collection of his designs.

I remembered my architectural studies of Frank Lloyd Wright, (FLW) and his unusual life, when I read colleague and author PJ Sharon’s post about the windy city, Chicago. The windy city, changed by the impact of FLW, and where Paula attended Romantic Times Booklovers convention, has a collection of FLW designs, the likes of which are unsurpassed.  (Look for Paula’s convention link at the end If you want to read about her experience.)

Paula’s post reminded me of FLW and his dedication to architecture. FLW,  King of architecture, influenced the architectural community with his daring, his technology, his attitude. There was an irresistible charm about him. Women adored him, men admired him, architects envied him. He spoke to women’s groups telling them how to live, how to decorate, how to get out of the rut of loving dead things, things with no form. He managed to open up a new way for these women to see form. What is form? In order for form to resonate, make you feel good, it needs to have soul. Houses of the times were rigid boxes with no soul, until FLW opened them up. Victoriana had no soul, just lots and lots and lots of collections. His openness was a fresh new way to live. In his gentle way of talking to the women who listened with a passion, he said “Ornament is not about prettying the outside of something, but rather it should have balance, proportion, harmony.” All of which creates  what FLW called the natural house. A house that blends with the land, a house that is designed with views to let the outside in.

Built in 1934 for Malcolm and Nancy WIlley, this Minneapolis home was restored in 2007 using cypress, plaster and regional brick.
Photo by Terrence Moore
It was abandoned for seven years, and totally disheveled, but here it is restored to its natural house form.
FLW never earned a degree. He left engineering school to apprentice in Chicago in the office of Adler and Sullivan. He learned on the job, then his opened his own practice. His belief in the natural, organic architecture, evolved from his exposure to Japanese architecture, his belief in simplicity, the nature of materials and influence of England’s Arts and Crafts Movement. He integrated these ideas of his time as he would the parts of a house, composing a symphonic whole that transcended the parts.
FLW not only did lots of buildings, but also did many wives. Frank at 69 with one of his many wives.

FLW home and studio with great gift shop

Here’s a FLW gift shop link: http://www.shopwright.org/

 

 

Do you have a FLW house or wish you had one?

Paula’s convention link:    http://secretsof7scribes.wordpress.com/2012/04/17/rt-recap.

“Inspiration is fifty percent dedication and fifty percent discipline. Together they equal progress.”

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