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Flamingo Sculpture, Chicago

Categories: Monuments, Tourist Spots
Inspirock Rating:
4.3/5 based on 110+ reviews on the web
Flamingo, created by noted American artist Alexander Calder, is a 53ft tall stabile located in the Federal Plaza in front of the Kluczynski Federal Building in Chicago, Illinois, United States. It was commissioned by the United States General Services Administration and was unveiled in 1974, although Calder's signature on the sculpture indicates it was constructed in 1973.AttributesFlamingo weighs 50 tons, is composed of steel, and is vermilion in color. Calder gave the stabile its color, which has come to be called "Calder red", to offset it from the black and steel surroundings of nearby office buildings, including the Ludwig Mies van der Rohe-designed Kluczynski Federal Building. The stabile is an art form which Calder pioneered. It is an abstract structure that is completely stationary, as opposed to a mobile, which can move with air currents. In 2012, the sculpture was repainted using the historic "Calder Red" color.Commissioning and unveilingCalder was commissioned to design the sculpture because of his well-established international reputation; the space, surrounded by rectangular modern buildings, necessitated the kind of arching forms and dynamic surfaces that a large-scale Calder stabile could provide. Flamingo was the first work of art commissioned by the General Services Administration under the federal Percent for Art program, which allocates a percentage of a project's budget to public art. Calder unveiled the model for Flamingo on April 23, 1973 at the Art Institute of Chicago; the sculpture was presented to the public for the first time on October 25, 1974, at the same time that Calder's Universe mobile was unveiled at what was then known as the Sears Tower (now the Willis Tower). The day was proclaimed "Alexander Calder Day" and featured a circus parade.
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  • Not necessarily mentioned in the guides, the Flamingo is a sculpture must see when we walk in Chicago. Its red colour is superb.
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  • A sculpture more in Chicago, and always very original: the Calder Flamingo. Its red color gives a touch of gaiety in the middle of the buildings. not to be missed
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  • The Flamingo is one of Calder's best known. We have an earlier one where I live in Grand Rapids, MI, same whimsy, same orange, it represents the rapids here. So, it's always fun to see Chicago's.....t...  read more »
  • Visiting Alexander Calder's Flamingo, 50 W Adams St, Chicago, IL 60610 is great. It's a short walk from the Sears Tower, Union Station and Ogilvie Station. Another masterpiece of public art on display in the Chicago Loop for all to enjoy! Well worth stopping to see the scale of the art installation.
  • A must-see work of public art in the Loop. This sculpture by Alexander Calder is one of the iconic images you see in movies and TV shows that take place in Chicago.
  • Serene place to sit and have a coffee in a bustling city
  • One more urban installation I loved in Chicago. The sterngth of the red steel and the harmony of the curves contrast with the lines and the blackish of the tall buildings around. One more must-see.
  • Who knew you could review a sculpture! Well this thing was amazing. I shot it 4am on Sunday morning and really found the lighting enjoyable. If you were wanting to check out a classic sculpture this is it. Calder is a genius and this deserves a look.
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