• Courtesy of Lucas Museum of Narrative Art

Dear everyone involved in creating the Lucas Museum,

Thank you for sharing images of the new Lucas skatepark, multiplex, warehouse, and Museum of Narrative Art on the Chicago lakefront.

And for including some explanatory text.

Not that the pictures aren’t great. They are!

But sometimes pictures, you know, just don’t tell the whole story.

It helps, for example, to read that this design “integrates the natural beauty of the park and Lake Michigan with the powerful man-made architecture of Chicago.”

That’s a biggie.

Because we might have been looking at that tallest bump and thinking something totally inappropriate—like nuclear reactor.

It also helps when you tell us that the “continuous, undulating, organic surface blurs the line between structure and landscape.”

‘Cause honestly? We might not have gotten that.

It might have looked to us like it’s perfectly clear where that huge, humped splat of something like extruded plastic ends and anything green and growing still exists.

It’s also comforting to learn that “The museum is not an isolated object, but a spatial experience that is defined by the people who occupy it and interact with it.”

Because those tiny speck-people in the pictures, trying to navigate that forbidding, bulbous white surface, were looking like so many stranded ants.

And it’s good to know that the museum building “tells a story.” Not the story of Jabba the Hutt, from which (just going by pictures) it might have been separated at birth, but a narrative that “ushers in the future of architectural design.”

That is genius. Because last year, with the city’s official blessing, the futuristic, organic, and iconic building we once had that did something very much like that, was bulldozed . . .

Bertrand Goldbergs Prentice Hospital
  • Bertrand Goldberg’s Prentice Hospital