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Art Institute of Chicago - A Feast for the Eyes and More

I love visiting cities and always allot time for the art museum. The Art Institute of Chicago has an amazing collection of art! It is likely overwhelming to take in everything on display. So, pace yourself and stop by multiple times if you can.

While in Chicago the first week of October, I managed to stop by the Art Institute twice. My friend and I stayed in a hotel on Michigan Avenue just a block away which made visiting more than once very easy. A great way to approach is through Millennium Park, the Lurie Gardens and crossing over Monroe Avenue via Nichols Bridgeway, designed by the architect Renzo Piano.

Shepley, Rutan and Coolidge were the architects of the classical Beaux-Arts building on Michigan Avenue which opened in 1893. The World's Columbian Exposition occupied the building from May to October 1893. Following that, the Art Institute took possession. Numerous additions have been made since, the most recent is the Modern Wing by Renzo Piano which opened in 2009.

Griffin Court and Sculpture Garden

Upon entry to the Modern Wing, I immediately noticed the dramatic sky lit passageway and looking past the stairway a small courtyard sculpture garden.

The chartreuse colored chairs in the garden, as well the large Ellsworth Kelly sculpture, White Curve (2009), beckoned me. Once outside in the garden, I noticed the Yoko Ono sculpture, Mended Petal (2016) directly across. Then it was back inside to view the exhibits.

Past Forward - Architecture and Design at the Art Institute

Past Forward - Architecture and Design at the Art Institute is devoted to the museum’s collection of architectural drawings and furniture, graphic, and industrial designs of the 20th and 21st centuries. I took photos of some of the models, furniture and a couple sketches, one by Renzo Piano for the Modern Wing and the other by Corbusier for a rural center.

Tarsila do Amaral: Inventing Modern Art in Brazil (through Jan. 7, 2018)

We were fortunate to visit on Oct. 7 when the Tarsila do Amaral exhibit opened. We learned that Tarsila was a central figure in the development of Brazil’s modern art.

Terzo Piano

Terzo Piano, the museum restaurant on the third floor of the Modern Wing, offers a space for dining and a pause from the rigors of exhibit viewing. The restful color palette of white and gray, the light colored wood flooring, high ceilings and ample light contribute to the a soothing ambience in which to enjoy the delicious food.

Modern Art

Below are some favorite paintings by Matisse, Picasso and Miro.

Contemporary Art

Below, some paintings by Rothko, Karel Appel, Warhol and Eva Hesse. The modern sculpture is by Barbara Hepworth.

Impressionist and Post-Impressionist Art

Some of my favorite paintings from the Impressionist and Post-Impressionist galleries - Monet, Berthe Morisot and Gustav Caillebot, 

Fragments of Chicago's Past

I was quite happy to view the architectural artifacts from Chicago's buildings displayed around the Grand Staircase. Highly recommend for those who are architecture buffs. Some of the artifacts in the photos below are from Frank Lloyd Wright buildings. 

Leaving Art Institute on Nichols Bridgeway

Though I took in a good number of galleries, I think I viewed less than half of what the Art Institute had on display.  Till next time...