School of the art institute of ChicagoPosted in United States of America | April 8, 2010 | Write a review
All visitors to the School of the art institute of Chicago are greeted by the sculpture of the roaring lion. The bronze sculptures designed by Edward Kerney flank the stairways that lead to the neoclassical façade of the museum. The lions are the emblem of the museum. The Art Institute lies in the heart of Chicago near Lake Michigan. The institute is encyclopedic in nature.
School of the art institute of Chicago was founded in 1879 as the Chicago Academy of Fine Arts. The pupils of the art academy include Georgia O’Keefe, Claes Oldenburg, Grant Wood, and Walt Disney. The art institute acquired its name in 1882.
Charles L. Hutchinson and Martin A. Ryerson are patrons of the institute. The duo donated huge chunks of the Demidoff Collection of Old Masters. The collection included works by Frans Hals, Meindert Hobbema, and Rembrandt van Rijn.
The institute was constructed in 1893 by Boston architects. The building served as the venue for the World’s Columbian Exposition held at 400th anniversary of the discovery of America. December of the same year saw the art and craft collection steadily increasing.
The Armory Show was a revolutionary exhibition which divided the art and craft world. Critics were taken aback by the avant garde exhibits and sculpture. This kind of art and craft was largely unheard of in America. However, the institute’s visionaries kept their faith and purchased several works from the exhibition, which resulted in an outstanding collection.
Bertha Palmer, an art lover, donated several exquisite collections of Renoirs, Monets, Degases, and Manets. Monet’s Wheatstacks also made it to the collection. George Seurat’s most famous work A Sunday Afternoon on La Grande Jatte became part of the museum in 1925. The works belonging to the Impressionist and Post-Impressionist periods became the hallmark of the institute.
The cultural pieces and objets d’art covers 5000 years of civilization. The artworks include antique statues and Bauhaus architecture. Presently more than 300,000 exhibits are displayed in 273 galleries spread over 172,000 square feet.
The Child’s Bath, by the renowned impressionist Mary Cassatt, is a masterpiece. Grant Wood’s American Gothic and Edward Hopper’s Nighthawks are also famous. The Bergman Galleries consist of surrealist works by Joseph Cornell.
The institute abounds in artworks related to post-war movements. Some of popular artists are Willem de Kooning, Jackson Pollock, Robert Rauschenberg, Mark Rothko, Lucian Freud, Frank Stella, Ellsworth Kelly, and Kiki Smith.
Gerhard Richter is a famous contemporary artist of America. His Christa and Wolfi and Women Descending the Stairs are a feast to the eyes. The Kraft Education Center features interactive workshops for children. Guided tours are available. A popular program is the ‘Masterpiece of the week’ held at midday. The ‘blockbuster’ exhibitions, too, are popular. The Art Institute of Chicago has the highest membership among museums across the world. The membership stands at 140,000.
The School of the art institute of Chicago is thrown open to the public throughout the week, but at different times. It is open from Monday to Wednesday and Friday from 10:30 am to 4:30 pm. Thursdays see visitors from 10:30 am to 8 pm. Weekend timings include 10 am to 5 pm.