Art Institute of Chicago

Art Institute of Chicago

As you walk into the old section of the Art of Institute of Chicago, you pass a grand staircase.  On the middle landing is a bronze sculpture of a torso created by Roussillon-born sculpturer Aristide Maillol in 1906.  It is entitled Enchanted Action.  

The white light in the staircase always tickles down to the toes, and yet the torso has no toes to tickle.  I always love the skylight and the shadows cast on the floor.

You'll find Maillol's work at the Museum of Modern Art, the grand staircase in the Metropolitan Opera House, the Kroller-Mueller Museum in the Netherlands (Mies van der Rohe's design for that museum was rejected), and in the Musée Maillol in Paris.

The Grand Staircase was added to the museum in 1910.  On its sides are the Ryserson and Burnham Libraries.  The building was originally constructed for the 1893 World's Columbian Exposition, with the understanding that it would become the new home for the Art Institute after the fair.  It was built in the Beaux Arts style.

The accompanying photograph was made before the Nutella store opened just up Michigan Avenue.  

Centennial Fountain

Centennial Fountain

Nutella

Nutella