Editor's Note: Have you ever found yourself in a city with more interest in art and architecture than you have time to see? If you have just one hour, art educator Carol Hurvitz has prepared suggested 'express tours' in some of the world's major art destinations.

This one focuses on Chicago - an American gateway city built right along the shoreline of Lake Michigan, internationally known for its sublime art and architecture.

Tour One
Location: The Loop
Destination: The Art Institute of Chicago, on South Michigan Avenue at Adams Street, in a classical beaux arts building where the mighty bronze lions by Edward Kemys have welcomed visitors from around the world for over 100 years.
Highlights: The museum has one of the world's greatest collections of Impressionist paintings, including
  • Many Claude Monet images of haystacks and a few water lilies
  • Georges Seurat's Sunday Afternoon on the Island of Grand Jatte, one of the museum's signature paintings
  • Pablo Picasso paintings and sculpture representative of his entire career
  • Edward Hopper's Nighthawks
  • Modern masterpieces by Jackson Pollock, Mark Rothko, Willem deKooning
More time?
  • For a look at five centuries of decorative arts, add a few minutes to visit the unique and renowned Thorne Rooms
  • The Chicago Stock Exchange Trading Room designed by Louis Sullivan, rescued from the wrecker's ball and re-constructed in the Columbus Drive entrance.
  • Tuesday is a Free Day ... and open until 8:00 pm ... but it's crowded.
  • For relative quiet in the galleries, try to visit on Monday (not many museums are open on Monday) or Wednesday.
  • But don't count on an early start: the museum doesn't open until 10:30 am
  • Admission Price: Adults - $8.00 Students and Seniors - $5.00
  • Closed Thanksgiving Day and Christmas Day
  • In an encyclopaedic museum like the Art Institute, not only are there are a variety of works, but also dining opportunities, from the cafeteria to the Court Garden Restaurant overlooking Grant Park and Lake Michigan
  • In summer, outdoor dining in McClintock Court
  • Or go across the street (Michigan Avenue) to the Russian Tea Room on West Adams
More information:
  • www.artic.edu
  • Telephone: (312) 443-3600

Tour Two
Location: North Michigan Avenue
Destination: The Museum of Contemporary Art, 220 East Chicago Avenue, a block east of Chicago landmark, the Water Tower, on Michigan Avenue
Highlights: Have you a passion for contemporary art? Maybe just want to learn about it?
  • Regularly scheduled travelling exhibitions supplement the highlights of the permanent collection, works from 1945 to the present day
  • Alexander Calder's mobiles
  • Robert Rauschenberg's paintings
  • Jasper Johns
  • Richard Serra
More time?  
  • Many MCA visitors come to learn more about contemporary art where there are regularly scheduled gallery talks and walks
    - Monday to Friday at 1:00 pm
    - Saturday and Sunday: 10:00 am, 11:00 am, 12:00 noon and 1:00 pm
  • You can call in advance to arrange a tour tailored just to your party's interests
  • There is also a light and airy book store and gift shop
  • Hours: Tuesday: 10:00 am - 8:00 pm; Wednesday to Sunday: 10:00 am - 5:00 pm
  • Admission costs: Adults - $8.00; Students and Seniors - $5.00
  • Closed: Monday Thanksgiving Day, Christmas Day and New Years Day.
  • Puck's at the MCA offers many of famed Californian chef Wolfgang Puck's signature dishes. (Double-storey glass walls separate the year-round inside dining space from the good-weather outside terrace.)
  • More casual fare at Flat Sammie's right down the street
  • Or Food Life, the innovative food-court in the Water Tower mall just across the street at 845 N. Michigan Ave.
More information:
  • www.mcachicago.org
  • Telephone: (312) 280-2660

Tour Three
Location: North Michigan Avenue
Destination: Interested in purchasing art? In the John Hancock building at 875 N. Michigan Avenue are two wonderful galleries:
  • Richard Gray Gallery, suite 2503
  • Allan Koppel Gallery, suite 2850
Highlights: Richard Gray Gallery
  • Specialises in modern and contemporary masters
  • Twentieth-century American and European paintings, drawings and sculpture

Allan Koppel Gallery

  • Specialises in modern and contemporary master works of art, as well as fine French and Italian furniture from the 1920s to the 1950s.
  • Exploring the dialogue between artworks of diverse mediums and styles, carries works in a variety of mediums, including painting, drawing, sculpture, photography and mixed media.
  • Each of the works, whether furniture or art, is selected with a sensitive eye towards aesthetics and functionality
  • Enter Gallery; When you find a work that catches your eye, begin to ask questions, such as: Who is the artist? What is the date of the object? Where does the artist live? What were the materials used? Do you have other works by the artist?
  • When discussing price, ask for collector's discount.
  • Tru Restaurant recently opened to Chefs Rick Trumonte and Gale Gand.
  • Tip - Make sure to check out the unique restroom décor
More information:
  • Carol Nasaw at: Ccarol4art.com
  • Telephone: (312) 961 3798ˇ
  • For deluxe custom art and architecture tours, contact Joan Arenberg at Art on the Move Tours at artonmove@aol.com.
  • Telephone: 847- 432-6265

Tour Four
Location: No Problem, We'll Take a Cab
Destination: The Chicago Architecture Foundation
  • Santa Fe Building at 224 South Michigan
  • (or) The John Hancock Center, 875 North Michigan Avenue
  • Sign up for one of their walking tours in a neighbourhood of your choice. Cost - $10.00 per person
  • Between May and October: The Chicago River tour. Two hours of water-cruising tour, easily one of the major cultural attractions in the city
  • Cost - $18.00 per person
  • Dress according to the weather
  • Bring lots of film
More information:  

Tour Five
Location: River North
Destination: SuHu (Superior and Huron Streets between Wells and Orleans Streets) Chicago has a wide and varied community of art galleries in the River North Area. Over 50 art galleries in walking distance are open
  • Tuesday to Saturday: 10:00 am - 5:00 pm
  • Many Friday night openings

More avant-garde galleries are located in the West Loop area, and they typically join for openings on the third Thursdays.

Highlights: Emerging Artists: Work exhibited includes
  • Contemporary painting and sculpture at
    - Carl Hammer Gallery
    - Perimeter
    - Zolla/Lieberman Gallery
  • Glass sculpture at
    - Marx/Saunders
    - Habitat
  • Tribal arts at
    - Douglas Dawson Gallery
  • Photographs
    - Catherine Edelman and Stephen Daiter Gallery
  • Latin Art
    - Aldo Castillo Gallery
  • Works from the early Twentieth Century
  • Robert Henry Adams Gallery
More time?
  • Art 2001, Chicago
  • Sofa
  • Gallery openings
  • Day of the Dead - Mexican Fine Arts
  • Chicago Cultural Center
  • Contemporary American cuisine at Harvest on Huron
  • Italian Food, try Scoozi

In the West Loop:

  • One of the best hamburgers in town at the Green Door
  • Wildly popular and inexpensive Wishbone
  • Upscale dining at Grace and at Blackbird

Blackbird - 619 W. Randolph 312-715-0708
Wishbone - 1001 W. Washington 312- 850-2663

More information:
  • Chicago Gallery News
  • Telephone: (312) 649 0064

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