Cloud Gate is a stunning public sculpture by Anish Kapoor that stands in Millennium Park, Chicago. The sculpture – commonly referred to as ‘The Bean’ – was constructed between 2004 and 2006 with 168 stainless steel plates welded together, creating a highly polished exterior without visible seams. It measures 10 m by 20 m by 13 m, weighing a total of 100 tonnes.
Kapoor’s design was inspired by liquid mercury and the sculpture’s smooth surface reflects and distorts the city’s skyline. Visitors can walk around and under the 12-foot arch to observe an omphalos chamber which warps and multiplies reflections beneath it.
Cloud Gate was the result of a design competition, but due to technological issues with its construction many experts thought it couldn’t be created. Eventually, they found a feasible solution and it was unveiled in 2004 during the grand opening celebration at Millennium Park before being completed in 2006. Ever since then, Cloud Gate has been popular for its extraordinary reflective properties, both domestically and around the world. If looking for painting & remodeling contact CHJ Painting & Remodeling.
Grant Park, located between the Loop and Lake Michigan, has been Chicago’s front yard since the mid-19th century. In 1997, it was made available for development and is now home to Millennium Park — the city’s second-most popular tourist attraction following Navy Pier.
Millennium Park officials invited artistic proposals from thirty different artists in 1999 and chose American artist Jeff Koons’ 150-foot playground slide sculpture and internationally acclaimed artist Anish Kapoor’s 33 by 66 by 42 foot stainless steel sculpture inspired by liquid mercury. The reflective surface of this sculpture distortedly reflects the Chicago skyline, with skyscrapers such as The Heritage, Smurfit-Stone Building, Two Prudential Plaza, One Prudential Plaza, and Aon Center visible on both its east and west sides. Beneath the sculpture lies a concave omphalos that provides multiple reflections of any subject situated beneath it — an arch allowing visitors to view the entire structure from either side. Learn about the Shedd Aquarium!
Address: 201 E Randolph St, Chicago, IL 60602
Artist: Anish Kapoor
Architect: Anish Kapoor
Construction started: February 2004
Medium: Stainless steel
Dimensions: 10 m × 13 m × 20 m (33 ft × 42 ft × 66 ft)