October 18, 2016

Art for the public consciousness: Luftwerk at 55th monthly CreativeMornings in Chicago


Last July, the Chicago chapter of the CreativeMornings community held their 55th monthly gathering with speakers Petra Bachmaier and Sean Gallero, the couple behind art-installation studio Luftwerk. Regarding public art, they recommend: “Let it live. Let it go wild.”

When art is installed—even integrated—into public areas, it begs to be noticed. While traveling through Chicago and elsewhere, I recalled a few examples of artistry, in the open, that happened to catch my attention.

This tree, in a Chicago South Loop neighborhood, wrapped in yarn.



This parking lot, in Downtown, illustrated with a mural.



This tree stump, at Starved Rock State Park, carved into a sculpture.



Each demonstrated a physical transformation of both the object and its surroundings. Visitors are likely to take a pause to feel a bit of wonder. Encountering each interpretation of art, situated in the public, reawakened a sense of delight. I smiled with my eyes.

I’d like to think this is the fundamental purpose of public art. That no matter how arid a person is in the inside, seeing something imaginative and unexpected helps facilitate a positive impression, a taste of the extraordinary, even if the resulting experience is short-lived. The artistic pulse beats on, especially in common spaces—the public wild.

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Big thanks: to Braintree, The Nerdery (Host), Hannah’s BretzelGreen Sheep WaterLyft, for being Partners of monthly Chicago CreativeMornings #55; to organizers Kim Knoll and Kyle Eertmoed who both spoke at Chicago CreativeMornings #7; to the team of volunteers for greatly helping to have CreativeMornings happen monthly in Chicago.

Especially big thanks: to Tina Roth Eisenberg—Swissmiss—for inventing CreativeMornings in 2008. The fifth chapter was launched in Chicago, June 2011—my write-ups and photos.

Read more about the people who make the Chicago chapter of CreativeMornings possible.

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My coverage: read more write-ups about CreativeMornings; view photos of CreativeMornings/Chicago gatherings.

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2011 was Chicago CreativeMornings’ debut year. Download the entire collection of selected insights.




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