Chicago Cultural Center Part 2

The ground level galleries had this one piece that really interested me. There were about 200 blocks of wood (about 4″ x 4″ x 8″ each). Each block was connected to about 5 other blocks with heavy duty hinges. Just about all the blocks were stacked one one another to form one giant block. However, there were a few stray blocks that were spilling away from the pile fully utilizing the hinges. All of this was on a yellow tarp which was not completely unrolled.

It was fascinating to look at. There were a couple of fluffy white gloves on the giant block. There was a sign on the way encouraging visitors to play with the blocks. And the yellow tarp could be unrolled further so people could extend their creations. I could have been there all day. I was trying to erect a Frank Gehry-like structure. It just wound up looking a like a pile of poop. But endless fun nonetheless.

The materials are so simple: blocks (all same size) and hinges. Nothing else. The artist could totally make smaller versions of these blocks and market them to the mass market. I would buy a set. It so much fun to play with. Because the hinges were in different places, you would get different results when trying to build something. The user is forced to understand the nature of the medium. At points I was thinking “I want this piece to move this way”, but the hinge dictacted otherwise thus forcing me to develop an alternative strategy. It’s a great balance between subdued brain activity and active brain activity.

I’ve always been interested in using hinges in my artwork. I did a little hinge/block piece in college. Hinges fascinate me for some reason. However, hinges are not cheap. I don’t know where the artist got the money to use all these hinges. I was very jealous when I saw all the hinges he/she used.

Unfortunately I didn’t jot down the artist’s name. Any one know?

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Matt Maldre
18 years ago

I’ll find out the artist’s name when I go over to the CCC today.


[…] Hey, hey, did you know that the world’s largest Tiffany dome is in my favorite place in Chicago? The Chicago Cultural Center. I didn’t know it was the world’s largest. It’s 38 feet in diameter and covers more than 1,000 square feet. It’s a beauty. Check it out some time. While you’re there, be sure to check out the art galleries on various floors of the building. There’s always something interesting at the Cultural Center. I’ve given props to the Cultural Center before and again. […]