Four Things to Know About the Auditorium Theatre
Built in 1889 by the famous architectural firm Adler and Sullivan, the Auditorium Theatre once reigned as one of Chicago's finest playhouses. Today, the National Registered Landmark belongs to Roosevelt University, and still enjoys life as an active theater and music venue. Restorations in 1967 and 2002 preserved its gold ceilings, eye-popping detail, and pin-drop acoustics, giving a new generation of Chicagoans a chance to commune with the city's history. Take your eyes off the stage and read on for the marvels surrounding this classic theatre:
It’s a portrait from an architecture as a young man. Adler and Sullivan tapped none other than a young Frank Lloyd Wright as draftsman. President Grover Washington, meanwhile, came to Chicago to lay the cornerstone.
The theatre had the first ever air-conditioning unit. By modern standards, the 15 pounds of ice per day it used to cool to interiors seems a bit passe. But at the time, this was the first air-conditioning ever and a marvel of engineering.
American luminaries from all fields graced its stages. In 1921, The Auditorium Theatre hosted Chicago’s first ever live radio broadcast—a performance of Puccini's classic Madame Butterfly. Other momentous event at the theatre include concerts by Jimi Hendrix and Frank Sinatra, as well speeches by Booker T. Washington and President Theodore Roosevelt, who delivered his Armageddon speech from the Auditorium’s stage.
The gilded ceilings are still made of gold. Although its doors were shuttered for years, the theater still boasts the same arched ceilings covered in 24-karat gold-leaf that once wowed Gilded Age audiences.
At Art de Triumph, local artist Nancie King Mertz showcases her original paintings and pastels and outfits clients' masterpieces in custom frames. Much like the courtroom artist at Rod Blagojevich's trial, Mertz often draws inspiration from iconic Chicagoan figures, rendering portraits including The Bean (also known as Cloud Gate) and the Wrigley Building. The Chicago Convention & Tourism Bureau named Mertz the Artist of the Year from 2005 through 2007, acknowledging her expertise with watercolor, oil, and pastel. In addition to ready-wear wall art, Art de Triumph deals in custom frames, helping clients select and customize matting and framing for photos, posters, and other important memorabilia such as the CTA card used to travel to the studio.
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The creative team of framers and decorators at Foursided stocks stacks of creative greeting cards and paraphernalia. The self-described "frame nerds" do more than cultivate a collection of stationery by planting paper seeds in nearby printing presses; they also place prints and objects into frames and furnish homes with original pieces by a handful of favored artists. Staffers also buy and sell vintage flash cards, puzzle pieces, and letter tiles harvested from a variety of objects.
Owner Todd Mack has worked in framing for 20 years, and he draws on his vast experience when custom mounting a broad spectrum of pieces. Vintage and recycled frames, archival framing, and shadow boxes are a few of the options available. Mack's interest in shadow boxes makes perfect sense to visitors who take a look at his own art, which assembles found photos and objects in forms that aren't always 2-D.
On HGTV's Urban Oasis, interior designer Vern Yip ornamented a luxury apartment with prints gathered from Foursided's expansive collection. In that collection, colorful shelves of letter blocks, maps, corks, baby-doll heads, and harmonicas turn personal, nostalgic objects into stylish new decorations. Candles, jewelry, and books round out the gift selections.
"[Tristan] Meinecke remains one of the monumental artistic secrets of Chicago," said John Corbett, a professor at the School of the Art Institute, "a man whose contribution remains to be adequately understood and evaluated." Even after spearheading a retrospective of the late artist's career at the SAIC, Corbett has been unable to define Meinecke's influence. Perhaps that's because Meinecke experienced a singular sort of success. He sold about two-thirds of the nearly 800 works he made while alive, yet had a prickly relationship with the city's curators and galleries. He was exhibited at the Art Institute and compared to midcentury contemporaries Pollock and Rothko, yet is unknown by most art students. In the hopes of finally defining their father's legacy, Meinecke's sons have reopened Tristan's Rodgers Park art space, where they're sharing his few hundred remaining pieces.
And there's much to see at Meinecke Art Space: throughout his life, Meinecke was an architect, painter, sculptor, writer, jazz musician, composer, and collage artist, among other things. In the spirit of his seemingly limitless talents, the Art Space also hosts classes taught by graduates of SAIC and Northern Illinois University. The sessions are open to anyone with artistic curiosities, whether they're true beginners or were born with paintbrushes for hands. It's not in the Meineckes' interest to limit anyone's creativity; after all, their father described himself as an "experimentalist."
What services does your business offer and what makes your business stand out from the competition?
CROME gallery now offers CROMEcreate, personable art classes created by knowledgeable artists and offered to children and adults. Guest artists will make appearances teaching their own techniques and processes.
What is the experience customers can expect?
Guests will gain knowledge in different materials, processes, and techniques in a laid-back and fun environment to create their own personalized masterpiece to take home. Each guest is provided the materials needed to produce the art instructed, but encouraged to let loose.
What was the inspiration to start or run this business?
Since opening the gallery in 2013, CROME had every intention of offering art classes for kids. In today's educational system, more and more schools are removing art programs from their curriculum. Creation is essential in children's growth and futures. With this, adult classes have been requested.
What do you love most about your job?
"To inspire is to be inspired." Seeing that sparkle and excitement in one's eyes when creating is enough to want to wake up every day and continue to do what I love doing.
Game the night away with your new purchases from Rotofugi in Chicago.
Revolutionize your life with the digital devices available such as video game systems.
A good old-fashioned stuffed animal is still much loved by all. Lucky for you, this store offers many to choose from.
No toy chest is complete without an action figure. Pick up one at this store to make sure you have this for your next play date!
Get your hardhat on! Pretend to be a construction worker today with your kiddos and start building with a fun set from this Rotofugi.
Your boundaries are unlimited when you are in control of an awesome radio control toy. Take it anywhere you want!
Never a dull moment with fun board puzzles and card games.
Your child will have an amazing time while learning with the help of this fantastic toy.
When's the last time you stayed in and played a board game? They will have you hooked before you know it.
Electronic toys can be fun at any age. Spice up your toy collection with this device from this store.
Bring all those great sights even closer with a quality pair of binoculars from Rotofugi.
Convenient parking spaces are located nearby to Rotofugi.
Video games for every console are waiting to be played, so get to Rotofugi in Chicago and start practicing.