It’s Summer People and what better way to cool down than by being by or looking at water…you might have noticed we sit on the edge of a body of water, Lake Michigan, actually, I do sit on a body of water, my home is on lake fill!!!! Oh, my! Let’s look at some of our wonderful water features.
The two images above grace the Penthouse terrace of a dear friend who adores anything Art Deco and fills his home and terrace with treasures from the period. By looking at these wonderful small pools of water you can see why. I am obsessed with them and I will share more photos of the terrace later this summer. The photos were taken several years ago and it has evolved but the silver lady is still the focal point.
A granite pillar fountain in the backyard of Tom Hawley and Tom Mantel’s Mid-Century modern home. I love the tranquility of it.
And in their front yard, an ode to Frank Lloyd Wright on his 150th year. Isn’t this a stunner!!! I love to sit in the living room and look out the window at this piece of sculpture.
You might prefer wonderous ponds on an estate’s grounds, also relaxing and divine scenery to capture your interest.
Or perhaps you would like a small waterfall in your garden. I took this photo at the Flower and Garden Show at Navy Pier earlier this year, http://www.chicagoflower.com. Next year’s show is March 14-18, 2018. I’m mad for the look of it and it seems to be a fairly easy feature to achieve in a small space, did I say easy….I guess I am watching too much HGTV, however, I did (all by myself!!!) dig out all the sod, 12 inches deep, and laid 8 ton of flagstone then built a raised Japanese garden in one corner, in my Evanston garden many, many years ago…Mom was the gardener, green arms, she cultivated over 200 rose bushes, mostly old fashioned English roses…but that is yet another post!
A waterfall in the City, why not, the John Handcock Center thought it would be a good idea…I agree and now that there is a Starbucks on that level as well as the Cheesecake Factory, to satisfy your cravings, it has great sitting spaces…what a perfect place to relax and watch the world go by! Pinterest photo, credit unknown,
At the North end of Millennium Park is the Wrigley Square Fountain.
I think this image is the most iconic with the Crown Fountain perfectly silhouetted againist our truly extraordinary skyline! Exquisite!!!! Pinterest photo credit unknown.
From the City of Chicago website some Crown Fountain facts:
“Designed by Spanish artist Jaume Plensa, the Crown Fountain in Millennium Park is a major addition to the city’s world-renowned public art collection.
The fountain consists of two 50-foot glass block towers at each end of a shallow reflecting pool. The towers project video images from a broad social spectrum of Chicago citizens, a reference to the traditional use of gargoyles in fountains, where faces of mythological beings were sculpted with open mouths to allow water, a symbol of life, to flow out.
Plensa adapted this practice by having faces of Chicago citizens projected on LED screens and having water flow through an outlet in the screen to give the illusion of water spouting from their mouths. The collection of faces, Plensa’s tribute to Chicagoans, was taken from a cross-section of 1,000 residents.
The fountain’s water features operate during the year between mid-spring and mid-fall, while the images remain on view year-round.”
I always love sitting in this hidden gem at The Art Institute of Chicago’s McKinlock Court. You can enjoy Jazz on Thursday evenings. I’ve gone there my entire life….a very long time and still find it a peaceful oasis in the middle of my city!
Moving further South on Michigan Avenue is this serene scene at the South end of the Art Institute of Chicago. Not only is this an extraordinary fountain display but a divine allèe that is truly glorious no matter the season. Designed and constructed between 1962 and 1967, the garden is one of Dan Kiley’s best-preserved commissions from the period.
As you walk into the park you find this Fountain of the Great Lakes, a sculptural fountain by Lorado Taft created in 1913. An aside, I did a Jhane Barnes men’s wear fashion show in this space, it was quite a fun and unique event and featured the talented Midnight Circus http://www.midnightcircus.net as entertainment, they are amazing and I used their performers many times when I was at Saks. I see that they are performing in Chicago’s parks this summer, check them out you won’t be disappointed!
I don’t have this fountain’s provenance but as you walk South from the Art Institute and a bit off Michigan Avenue (the railway tracks are just to the East) you will come upon this charmer.
Of course, my favorite of all our Chicago water features is Buckingham Fountain. As a little girl, Mom and I would often meet Daddy for dinner and a stroll down Michigan Avenue, I would run (much to Daddy’s chagrin) from Michigan Avenue to the Fountain to watch the lights change, I knew in my heart that it was all Daddy’s magic and he made it happen! He did you know!!! When I am teaching at Columbia College Chicago I can look out my classroom window and see the Fountain in all seasons. It is a joyful occasion when it is turned on in May! A Nena’s Note, yet another fashion show venue for Saks Fifth Avenue Chicago…we did an Emanuel Ungaro personal appearance and fashion show in a tent by the Fountain. It was a benefit for the Woman’s Board of the Alliance Française de Chicago http://www.af-chicago.org. May I brag and say it was a phenomenal evening and a very successful event.
I thought you might like a brief history of the Fountain, the following is taken from the Chicago Park District website http://www.chicagoparkdistict.com/…buckingham-memorial-fountain
Thank you Nena for your lovely pictures of the beautiful places and fountains nearby where I now live. Buckingham Fountain has always been a favorite of mine too!
There is a wonderful fountain that was transferred years ago to outside the Chicago History Museum commissioned by Mayor Jane Byrne. It originally stood at Wabash and Wacker before it was removed .Always a favorite for my grandkids to throw pennies in and still there for all to enjoy.
Thanks Marcia. Just the tip of the “iceberg” There are so many fountains around the City. I’ll do another post once I can get around to take photos. I love that fountain as well.
I understand there are over a hundred! Fun adventure.
I know. Each of my stories reveal so many other possibilities for more in depth coverage!!! Always open to suggestions!!!
Great blog Nena! I realize how much I have missed the Art Institute … haven’t been there this year! Karen
Thanks Karen. Yes, the Art Institute is truly one of our gems in the City!!
Wonderful blog! I would be happy to sit by any of these water features and just relax.
Thank you for your dedication to showing us chicagos finest.
Thanks so much. I always love and appreciate your comments. Actually you can relax by two of them on a daily basis lucky you!!!
So many more to highlight just need to get out with my camera.
Wonderful! I especially love your reminiscences of your parents and being a little girl on the Mag Mile, fun read as always
Hi my biggest supporter, in many ways!! I had THE best childhood anyone could ask for, lucky me!!
Tomorrow’s post is rather fun anxious to hear your thoughts on it!!
Thank you Nena for sharing the beauty of Chicago !
Thanks so much. We do have a beautiful city!!!!