Now in its third year, Art Loop has become the premiere venue for contemporary public art in Chicago. Through Art Loop, Chicago Loop Alliance commissions artists to develop and present original, site-specific work in visible locations in the Loop.
In 2010, Art Loop launched with Tony Tasset’s three-story eyeball sculpture and accompanying cardinal street banners. Located in Pritzker Park, EYE “saw” hundreds of thousands of visitors and garnered more than 180 million media impressions from around the world. The following summer, Kay Rosen connected art to action with a mural, “GO DO GOOD,” painted in bright yellow and black on a wall of a downtown skyscraper. And in 2012, renowned artist Jessica Stockholder created a site-specific, three-dimensional work of art titled “Color Jam” that saturated streets, sidewalks and building facades with a bold and resonant palette of colors.
Art Loop’s stated goals are to serve the public, promote creative expression, and create value for Loop businesses and institutions. “That’s an example of (art) that is doing several jobs at once,” said James Rondeau, chair of contemporary art at the Art Institute of Chicago about Art Loop. “It was hoped that it would entertain and be popular and successful, not threatening or for a specialized audience, but at the same time it made a statement that was deeply important in terms of the dialogue with the community. It struck a balance.”
Art Loop 2012
Between June and September of 2012, a central Loop intersection was transformed into an artist’s canvas. Commissioned by Chicago Loop Alliance, renowned artist Jessica Stockholder created a site-specific, three-dimensional work of art titled “Color Jam.” “Color Jam” saturated streets, sidewalks and building facades with a bold and resonant palette, creating a sensation of “walking through an animated film.”
Art Loop 2011
CLA, in partnership with the United Way of Metropolitan Chicago, created the "GO DO GOOD" campaign to inspire organizations, businesses, residents, visitors and students in the Loop to “do good” in their daily lives. Since its launch in May 2011, the campaign has motivated over 90,000 committed good deeds. These good deeds range from simple acts of kindness to large gestures of selflessness.
The campaign was inspired by internationally-acclaimed artist Kay Rosen’s bold six-story “GO DO GOOD” mural commissioned by CLA as part of its Art Loop 2011 public art initiative. The mural, located on the north wall of the Stevens Building at State and Washington, will remain visible until spring 2012.
Among the many donations and hours volunteered, some highlights include:
- Approximately 4,000 books were donated as part of a book drive hosted by the local nonprofit, Reading Tree
- The food drive collected enough food for the Greater Chicago Food Depository to serve 671 meals to needy people
- The Chicago Home & Aid Society distributed the 4,000 school supplies donated by CLA members to Chicago-area students as part of the “Stuff the Bus” campaign
- At the June “read-in” event, 53 children from an underserved neighborhood enjoyed a reading by football star Rashied Davis at Pritzker Park
- ABC 7’s Windy City Live dedicated a full hour-long episode to “doing good” and gave away 1,000 gallons of free gasoline
- Throughout the course of the campaign, Chicagoans – including Mayor Rahm Emanuel, Ozzie Guillen and Bill Rancic – pledged to do 5,270 good deeds via pledge forms distributed in venues throughout the city
Art Loop 2010
All eyes were on State Street as CLA unveiled internationally-renowned, Chicago-based contemporary artist Tony Tasset’s three-story (30-foot-tall) sculpture EYE and flipbook banner series entitled CARDINAL. EYE was located at Pritzker Park at the corner of State Street and Van Buren July through October.
CARDINAL was an installation of street banners revealing a bold red cardinal in flight against a bright blue sky, unfolding like a flipbook on State Street lamp posts from Wacker to Congress on State Street.
Tasset’s EYE and CARDINAL received more than 180 million media impressions from outlets across the globe including BBC, CNN, The Today Show, The Huffington Post, Los Angeles Times, Chicago Tribune and Yahoo! News. In addition, CLA created a series of free community programs and family-friendly events in celebration the installations.