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Art and Architecture

The Crown Fountain

Designed by Spanish artist Jaume Plensa and inspired by the people of Chicago, The Crown Fountain is a major addition to the city's world-renowned public art collection.

The fountain consists of two 50-foot glass block towers at each end of a shallow reflecting pool. The towers project video images from a broad social spectrum of Chicago citizens, a reference to the traditional use of gargoyles in fountains, where faces of mythological beings were sculpted with open mouths to allow water, a symbol of life, to flow out. Plensa adapted this practice by having faces of Chicago citizens projected on LED screens and having water flow through a water outlet in the screen to give the illusion of water spouting from their mouths. The collection of faces, Plensa's tribute to Chicagoans, was taken from a cross-section of 1,000 residents.

The fountain, which anchors the southwest corner of Millennium Park at Michigan Avenue and Monroe Streets, is a favorite of both children and families. The water is on from mid-spring through mid-fall each year (weather permitting,) while the images remain on year-round.

The Crown Fountain's water feature will be turned on April 15, 2006.

A fountain is the memory of nature, this marvelous sound of a little river in the mountains translated to the city. For me, a fountain doesn't mean a big jet of water. It means humidity, the origin of life.
-Jaume Plensa

Featured Events

April 17, 2007 - April 1, 2008

Mark di Suvero / Millennium Park

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