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New South Loop mural a gift of Cirque du Soleil and ‘Luzia’

The new "Luzia"-inspired mural by Chicago artist Gloria “Gloe” Talamantes, commissioned by Cirque du Soleil in partnership with Columbia College Chicago and the Wabash Arts Corridor, is located at 33 E. Congress Parkway. | DAN REST

Cirque du Soleil’s production, “Luzia: A Waking Dream of Mexico,” will be packing up its big top tents outside the United Center after the elaborate spectacle has its final performance in Chicago on Sept. 3. But the company is leaving behind a remembrance of its visit in the form of a recently completed public mural located at 33 E. Congress Parkway.

To help honor Chicago’s Year of Public Art, Cirque du Soleil, in partnership with Columbia College Chicago and the Wabash Arts Corridor (WAC), commissioned local artist Gloria “Gloe” Talamantes to create a mural inspired by “Luzia,” a production whose images of butterflies and rain are captured in the work. It is the latest addition to the more than 40 murals in the South Loop neighborhood, and kicks off this year’s public art exhibition, Street Level, which will unveil eight new murals presented at street level and created by a diverse group of local, national, and international artists.

In a prepared statement, Claudine Rivard, company manager of “Luzia,” noted: “We are happy to give this artistic gift to Chicago for its Year of Public Art. It is a way for Cirque du Soleil to thank the city and its residents for all of their support – not just for ‘Luzia,’ but for embracing our artists and crews for over 17 productions across 28 years.”