#Charlottesville, Before and After

You can change the way a place looks, but you can’t change the history that made it that way. That’s a reality that the tragedy in Charlottesville, and the current uproar about Civil War monuments throughout the United States, can’t transform. Viscerally, I understand the confused, angry feelings of an African-American child staring up at […]

Chicago Architecture Biennial update: Friends of Downtown

Last week, we had about 40 people join us on two Biennial Jane’s Walks led by Rolf Achilles, “The Art of Local Architecture on Dearborn Street from Van Buren to Randolph.” Tomorrow evening, October 14th, we’ll be presenting our final Biennial event, 35 years of Friends of Downtown: What Have We Achieved, and What’s Left? […]

Spring is sprung: Let’s #Walk around #Chicago!

We’re lining up Walk Leaders for the 3rd annual Jane’s WalkCHICAGO,  and are working on planning other related events.  So far, we have Julia Bachrach returning to lead a Walk in Jackson Park, and Mike Shymanski will be leading a Walk in Pullman. Other potential locations include: Maggie Daley Park the Marquette Park neighborhood South […]

A genealogy: #Holly Whyte, #Jane Jacobs and #Jane’s WalkCHICAGO

Crawling into the dog days of August, there was a terrific blog post on the website of The Project for Public Spaces this week (and also on Twitter), summarizing the career of William (“Holly”) Whyte.  As a recovering New Yorker, I knew some of his story, but this post added lots of fascinating and informative […]

Arts & Public Life: Theaster Gates

This week, I had the privilege of touring Theaster Gates’ Arts Incubator and Dorchester Projects, and hearing him talk about his extraordinarily multi-faceted art practice. Gates describes himself as “wearing three hats”: • The artist whose practice includes performance, sculpture, installation, and large-scale urban intervention; • The real estate developer who has assembled a portfolio […]