If you happen along Chicago's Cultural Mile and are greeted by what looks like Giant Chia Heads...large head-shaped planters filled with leafy greens, you have just bore witness to Chicago's latest reincarnation of its highly popular Cows on Parade in 1999 or the more controversial Marilyn statue of two summer's ago.
In my opinion, the new installation "Plant Green Ideas," missed the boat by not calling itself "Heads on Parade"--just sayin'. But the signage is out and the promotions are up so I guess we are stuck with the "Plant Green Ideas" moniker for the duration of the exhibition which runs through August 31, 2013.
The enormous heads--standing approximately 12 feet tall and weighing over 2,000 pounds each (just try to steal one of those)--are the brainchild of Plant Green Ideas, a not-for-profit group committed to sustainability in Chicago. The head project, not an inexpensive or small endeavor, has managed to entice an impressive roster of sponsors the likes of: Walgreens, the Ford Motor Company, WGN-TV, Willis Tower, Abt and a host of others.
This time around, the public art display is not just for fun, there is a message to the madness. The message according to the Plant Green Ideas website is that "the interactive art installation is intended to inspire new ways of thinking about sustainability and to encourage new behaviors that will positively impact the environment while also raising awareness of Chicago’s leadership in the “green” economy."
In order to get this across, each eco-friendly sculpture features a unique theme and message created through sustainable plantings and material. Pamella Capitanini, co-founder, Plant Green Ideas explains "It is our intention to encourage thought and discussion of ways to make the world around us greener and healthier."
If you would like to bear personal witness to these sculptures, you will find them all along Chicago's Cultural Mile--which runs nearly two miles--from Michigan Avenue and the Chicago River, south down Michigan Avenue, then east toward the lake on Roosevelt Road, where it goes southeast on Columbus Drive, then east on McFetridge Drive, then back north, and east on Solidarity Drive.
Here are locations and sponsors for some of the heads:
- 30 N. Michigan Ave. Sponsored by Walgreens Presenting sponsor
- 2 S. Michigan Ave. Sponsored by Mars Chocolate
- 104 S. Michigan Ave. Sponsored by Ford Presenting sponsor
- 122 S. Michigan Ave. Sponsored by Mrs. Meyers Clean Day
- 310 S. Michigan Ave. Sponsored by Clarke Environmental
- 400 S. Michigan Ave. Sponsored by Chicago Cultural Mile Association
- 400 S. Michigan Ave. Sponsored by Willis Tower
- 500 S. Michigan Ave. Sponsored by SVI
- 500 S. Michigan Ave. Sponsored by Abt
- 500 S. Michigan Ave. Sponsored by Italian Village
- 600 S. Michigan Ave. Sponsored by Columbia College
- 600 S. Michigan Ave. Sponsored by Active Transportation Alli
- 600 S. Michigan Ave. Sponsored by Landscape Concepts Management
- 600 S. Michigan Ave. Sponsored by Plant Green Ideas
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