Kate Shepard, Chicagoist, January 12, 2017

Grant Park is getting a new art installation just south of 9th Street and Michigan Avenue by the end of January or early February.

“The Artists Monument” by Chicago-based multimedia artist Tony Tasset is long and rectangular-shaped featuring “multicolored acrylic panels” made of steel and wood. It’s also etched with the names of 392,486 contemporary and modern artists, according to the Whitney Museum of American Art. The Whitney put it on view in New York’s Hudson River Park for their 2014 biennial.

It’s part of the city’s initiative to bring temporary art out to the parks and make it accessible to the people of Chicago, according to Bob O’Neill, president of the Grant Park Conservancy.
“Art in the parks also draws more people into parks to enjoy the nature and other culture that is there,” O’Neill said in an email. “It creates a multi-dimensional experience in parks.”
O’Neill is hoping that the new, bright piece of art will draw visitors to Grant Park in the winter. Visitors, including artists, will be intrigued by reading the hundreds of thousands of names on the piece, he said.

“Public art, parks and culture are really important to making Chicago a more lively, interesting, and global city,” he said. “Art pays for itself in attracting tourists and visitors and increasing the quality of life of Chicago’s residents.”
Tasset is a professor at UIC and is no stranger to his works being put on public display in Chicago. His famous eye sculpture was on display in Pritzker Park, at State and Van Buren streets and his snow sculpture is on display at 1613 W. Chicago Ave.

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