The house next door to mine was torn down. My neighbors don’t quite remember the year, but the resident local historian, Maurice, who has lived on the block since the late 60s, was shipped off to Vietnam and, upon his return in 1972, the house had vanished. The product of “slum clearance” on Chicago’s west […]
A hunt for Chicago treasures
For Jessica Mlinaric it all started in her grandma’s backyard. “My cousin and I spent hours drawing scavenger hunts and treasure maps to the patch of trees between her lawn and a neighboring grocery store parking lot,” writes Mlinaric in the introduction to her new book Chicago Scavenger: The Ultimate Search for Chicago’s Hidden Treasures. […]
Welcome to the skate park
“When we go to a skate park, we take up space, and then all of a sudden you don’t see a bunch of guys trying to tell you to move out the way, ’cause we’re the majority now,” says Lid Madrid. “And we’re taking up space, and just changing the way that skate parks traditionally […]
Best tour of non-sentient architecture in Chicago
When Will Quam was asked if all bricks want to be arches, he insisted that bricks have neither feelings nor desires, that as wonderful as they are, they simply aren’t sentient. Quam, Chicago’s resident “brick whisperer,” gives walking tours of Chicago where he shares his infectious passion for—yes—bricks. The tours last 90 minutes, cover 1.5 […]
On winter and the built environment
Winter is inevitable, but it still feels like an unwelcome surprise each year. To architecture journalist Anjulie Rao, it’s a season of reevaluation, reflection, and transformation. Fascinated by what winter represents, Rao has started a small publication on the topic—a “grand experiment” whose biweekly publishing schedule will follow the length of the season, December 21, […]
A more local Chicago Architecture Biennial
The Chicago Architecture Biennial focuses on a “deeper engagement with the local community” in “The Available City.”
Studying the cityscape
This fall brings the return of the Chicago Architecture Biennial, an exposition of activities, tours, and exhibitions all over the city that highlight the power of architecture and the ways in which Chicagoans inhabit the spaces of the city. Although looking at skyscrapers and touring old houses are always edifying and fun ways to check […]
Writer-photographer Lee Bey’s new book Southern Exposure showcases architectural masterworks on the typically neglected south and west sides.
Eviction is more than just a bureaucratic process
An architecture critic and a housing reporter visit a new exhibition in Milwaukee.
Survival of the starter home
Could a design contest help replenish Chicago’s affordable housing stock?
The Beach is the interactive exhibit Navy Pier deserves
Neither art nor architecture, this ball pit is completely Instagram ready.
Hedwig Dances assembles a Bauhaus-inspired Futura
The contemporary troupe explores the architecture of dance.
The City Museum in Saint Louis will do anything—even risk eternal damnation—to build its Louis Sullivan collection
The Chicago School is alive and well—300 miles south of the city.
Jackson Park and Thompson Center lead Preservation Chicago’s annual list of the city’s seven most-endangered architectural treasures
Jackson Park is the designated site of the Obama Presidential Library.
Are tiny houses a solution to homelessness in Chicago?
The push for a small answer to a massive problem