Arts & Entertainment

Top 4 Chicago Museum Exhibits to Visit This Semester

Chicago has a lot to offer at its museums, and Loyola students can visit several for free. With many upcoming museum free days scheduled and student discounts available, there are opportunities to explore unique exhibits. Here are The PHOENIX’s top picks.

Loyola Museum of Art

The Loyola Museum of Art (LUMA), located at 820 Michigan Ave., has featured a variety of exhibits, including works from Chicago artists. In “Everyday Englewood,” Englewood native activist Tonika Lewis Johnson shows the true colors of one of Chicago’s South Side neighborhoods through photographs of the community and its residents. The vivid photos show candid scenes of businesses, homes and residents of Englewood.

Johnson said her photography shows a different portrait of Englewood and she wants to encourage honest dialogue.

“It provides a platform to discuss the fact that images like mine have not been shared in the public space or are absent from the media as a whole and to really think about ‘Why is that?’” Johnson said.

Johnson will attend the opening reception at 5:30 p.m. Feb. 9 at LUMA. The reception will also feature artists Gregory Beals and Della Wells.

Beals’ photography sheds light on refugees in “They Arrived Last Night,” and Wells’ images examine contemporary issues of race and gender.

Admission to LUMA is free for Loyola students.

Museum of Contemporary Art

Chicago artist Paul Heyer’s exhibit at the Museum of Contemporary Art gives visitors an immersive multisensory experience with sound, painting and sculpture. This is Heyer’s first solo exhibit, and it’s part of the MCA’s Chicago Works series featuring local artists.

His paintings are surreal; vivid scenes are interrupted by large circles that draw you in. Other images make the viewer meditate on the universe and its possibilities. In the center of one room is a large, metallic mattress, and another sculpture reimagines the universe as broomsticks. A dreamy, hypnotic soundtrack adds to the surreal visions.

Heyer said his art was inspired by rave and club culture, where the rules don’t always apply.

“On the most basic level, you can dress however you want, you can dance however you want, you can be whoever you want,” Heyer said. “But on a larger level, a lot of the rules that we live by day to day are just made up, and so I’m asking [visitors] to not take them for granted but also to use the muscle of your imagination to stretch the limits of what’s possible.”

The exhibit is now open and runs until July 1.

Admission for students is $8 and free to Chicagoans on Tuesdays.

The Field Museum

Opening March 16, modern technology will bring an in-depth look into how ancient Egyptian people lived in “Mummies.” The exhibit has traveled across the country and is returning to the Field Museum with rare new artifacts such as Peruvian beer jars. Three-dimensional and computer tomography scans reveal what mummies looked like when they were alive, and they’re brought to life through lifelike renderings, according to a press release provided to The PHOENIX.

The exhibit is offered with a Discovery Pass for $28 or an All-Access Pass for $33. It runs Mar. 16 through April 21, 2019.

Museum of Science and Industry

Chicago native Adam Reed Tucker’s Brick by Brick” brings architectural wonders to scale with Legos. Tucker showcases more than a dozen Lego renderings and brings visitors closer to the designs of structures such as the Colosseum, Golden Gate Bridge and International Space Station. The exhibit is interactive, and visitors are given the opportunity to learn about the mechanics behind architecture while building their own Lego sculptures.

“Brick by Brick” is running now through April 1.

Free days for Chicago museums can be found here.

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