Jul 30, 2008
Last Sunday I arrived in Chicago and had the opportunity to visit one of the coolest cities I’ve ever been to. It was a very short trip, only 2 days, and I will definitely go back to Chicago again in the future; hopefully the near one
Walking around Chicago was great: the skyscrapers and all the history behind them and their architects such as the well known Mies van der Rohe. Also some famous movies shot there like: Batman Begins, The Dark Night, The Blues Brothers, Road to Perdition and the Ferris Bueller's Day Off historic parade scene.
The first skyscraper was the ten-storey Home Insurance Building in Chicago, built in 1884–1885. While its height is not considered unusual or very impressive today, the architect, Major William Le Baron Jenney, created the first load-bearing structural frame. In this building, a steel frame supported the entire weight of the walls, instead of load-bearing walls carrying the weight of the building, which was the usual method. This development led to the "Chicago skeleton" form of construction. After Jenney's accomplishment the sky was truly the limit as far as building was concerned. Wikipedia
In 1885, the first steel-framed high-rise building rose in Chicago ushering in the skyscraper era. Today, Chicago's skyline is among the world's tallest. Downtown's historic buildings include the Chicago Board of Trade Building in the Loop, with others along the lakefront and the Chicago River. Once first on the list of largest buildings in the world and still listed thirteenth, the Merchandise Mart stands near the junction of the north and south river branches. Presently the three tallest in the city are the Sears Tower, the Aon Center (previously the Standard Oil Building), and the John Hancock Center. Wikipedia
Ludwig Mies van der Rohe, along with Walter Gropius and Le Corbusier, is widely regarded as one of the pioneering masters of modern architecture. Mies, like many of his post World War I contemporaries, sought to establish a new architectural style that could represent modern times just as Classical and Gothic did for their own eras. He created an influential 20th century architectural style, stated with extreme clarity and simplicity. His mature buildings made use of modern materials such as industrial steel and plate glass to define interior spaces. He strived towards an architecture with a minimal framework of structural order balanced against the implied freedom of free-flowing open space. He called his buildings "skin and bones" architecture. He sought a rational approach that would guide the creative process of architectural design, and is known for his use of the aphorisms "less is more" and "God is in the details". Wikipedia
I really enjoyed my time in Chicago and if you ever get a chance to visit this great city, I highly recommend you go. Meanwhile I'll leave you with some photos I took.