Video Sculpture Brings Chicago’s Millennium Park Alive

Chicago's Millennium Park, at Michigan Avenue and Monroe Streets, stands two 50-foot high transparent glass block towers.

Two 50-Foot High Video Walls Hold Interactive Conversation at Chicago’s Millennium Park

CHICAGO, IL — On the southwest corner of Chicago’s Millennium Park, at Michigan Avenue and Monroe Streets, stands two 50-foot high transparent glass block towers. Each tower includes an LED video wall on the inside portion that overlooks a reflecting pool. The two towers appear to be communicating with each other. It’s a silent conversation conveying the dual nature of relationships, made through a smile or a raised eyebrow. Each video last for about 5 minutes and includes a section where the subject’s lips become puckered, as if they were about to suck on a straw, and then water begins to spout from the center of their mouth. It’s quite whimsical. As the video sculpture plays, water cascades down the sides of each tower filling the black granite reflecting pool and forming a mist around each tower.

The fountain’s concept was created by Jaume Plensa, an internationally known artist and sculptor, and built by Krueck & Sexton Architects. The fountain contains a total of more than one million LEDs with each tower utilizing an array of 147 Barco LED screens. The Barnycz Group created the fountain’s synchronized video playback system as well as the software that gauges the environmental conditions that control the lighting, video and water systems. This is one of the best examples of public art that I have seen in the last few years, the only word to describe it is: mesmerizing.

Photo: Kobby Dagan

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