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Chicago Makes Modern

How Creative Minds Changed Society

Chicago is a city dedicated to the modern—from the skyscrapers that punctuate its skyline to the spirited style that inflects many of its dwellings and institutions, from the New Bauhaus to Hull-House. Despite this, the city has long been overlooked as a locus for modernism in the arts, its rich tradition of architecture, design, and education disregarded. Still the modern in Chicago continues to thrive, as new generations of artists incorporate its legacy into fresh visions for the future. Chicago Makes Modern boldly remaps twentieth-century modernism from our new-century perspective by asking an imperative question: How did the modern mind—deeply reflective, yet simultaneously directed—help to dramatically alter our perspectives on the world and make it new?

Returning the city to its rightful position at the heart of a multidimensional movement that changed the face of the twentieth century, Chicago Makes Modern applies the missions of a brilliant group of innovators to our own time. From the radical social and artistic perspectives implemented by Jane Addams, John Dewey, and Buckminster Fuller to the avant-garde designs of László Moholy-Nagy and Mies van der Rohe, the prodigious offerings of Chicago’s modern minds left an indelible legacy for future generations. Staging the city as a laboratory for some of our most heralded cultural experiments, Chicago Makes Modern reimagines the modern as a space of self-realization and social progress—where individual visions triggered profound change. Featuring contributions from an acclaimed roster of contemporary artists, critics, and scholars, this book demonstrates how and why the Windy City continues to drive the modern world.

304 pages | 72 color plates, 30 halftones | 7 5/8 x 9 3/4 | © 2012

Architecture: Architecture--Criticism

Art: Art--General Studies

Chicago and Illinois

Table of Contents

     Walter E. Massey
     Mary Jane Jacob and Justine Jentes
     Mary Jane Jacob and Jacquelynn Baas

Modern Minds

Like Minded: Jane Addams, John Dewey, and László Moholy-Nagy
     Mary Jane Jacob
Better Than Before: László Moholy-Nagy and the New Bauhaus in Chicago
     Maggie Taft
Moholy’s Upward Fall
     Ronald Jones
Designers in Film: Goldsholl Associates, the Avant-Garde, and MidcenturyAdvertising Films
     Amy Beste
Modern Mind and Typographic Modernity in György Kepes’s Language of Vision
     Michael J. Golec
From Chicago to Berlin and Back Again
     Kathleen James-Chakraborty
Buckminster Fuller in Chicago: A Modern Individual Experiment
     Tricia Van Eck
Keck and Keck: The Chicago Modern Continuum
     Andreas Vogler and Arturo Vittori
Mies Is in Pieces
     Ben Nicholson
Iñigo Manglano-Ovalle’s Reckonings with Mies
     Elizabeth A. T. Smith

Artists’ Mind

My Modern: Experiencing Exhibitions
     Kate Zeller
Incomplete Final Checklist (Unconfirmed)
     Marcos Corrales
     Helen Maria Nugent and Jan Tichy
Mies as Transparent Viewing Cabinet for Pancho’s Crazy Façade
     Ângela Ferreira
Bioline: Activating the Mundane
     Walter Hood
     J. Morgan Puett
End Notes
     Narelle Jubelin and Carla Duarte
Modernity Retired
     Staffan Schmidt
Design with Conviction
     Charles Harrison interviewed by Zoë Ryan
Life as Art
     Anna Halprin interviewed by Jacquelynn Baas
City of Art
     Michelangelo Pistoletto interviewed by Mary Jane Jacob
An Outbreak of Peace
     Jitish Kallat interviewed by Madhuvanti Ghose
Raising the Roof
     Ai Weiwei interviewed by Jacquelynn Baas
Integrating Art and Life
     artway of thinking interviewed by Mary Jane Jacob


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