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Murals and Mosaics

A series that aims to capture, catalogue and celebrate the beauty of Chicago's streets, as seen through its public art.

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It’s all about the hair in the murals on a West Town salon building

Magen Sabo wanted something attention-grabbing for her new business. Her artist friend Won Kim provided it, collaborating with rawooh, another Chicago artist.

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In Joliet, an Aztec goddess watches over new mural at Spanish Community Center

Sonryze — one of three artists collaborating on the unfinished work — hopes it will be ‘the antidote to a year of negativity’ for those who view it.

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Saving iconic religious art in Chicago: Loop stained glass, River Grove mosaic at risk

There are fears over what could happen to a towering stained-glass work at financially troubled Chicago Loop Synagogue and a mosaic at River Grove’s old Guerin Catholic high school.

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Eugene ‘Eda’ Wade, ‘master artist’ who worked on landmark Wall of Respect, dead at 81

A Chicago star in the Black Arts Movement, his work also included turning 32 steel fire doors at Malcolm X College into vibrant, majestic murals.

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In Back of the Yards, a hamburger with eyes, ‘fox demon’ and waving bird paint a once-blank concrete canvas

The viaduct at West 49th and South Honore streets in Back of the Yards is now filled with colorful street art that came together ‘spur of the moment.’

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In West Loop, a popup art exhibition featuring murals, other works of art has opened

Artopia featuress the works of several Chicago street artists.

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Artists, volunteers transformed King College Prep’s halls with murals

With the help of the organization Chi Gives Back, they turned the walls of the South Side school into canvases filled with art.

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New Deal-era mural about ships finds a new life at a Bridgeport museum

Commissioned in 1936, the ‘History of Ships’ mural had a tumultuous past before finding a new home at the Chicago Maritime Museum.

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Restored mosaic on the Far North Side highlights Jewish immigrants’ struggles

It has adorned the Bernard Horwich JCC on Touhy Avenue in West Ridge since 1980. It portrays the challenges they faced coming here in the late 19th and early 20th centuries.

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In Back of the Yards, Chicago artist’s mural features characters he sketched in high school

Artist FRILLZ says he wanted the mural to capture a sense of the Southwest Side neighborhood, and ‘light the way’ for kids there.

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Students’ mural in Humboldt Park spotlights what’s important to its creators

So it includes famous people whose deaths touched them. And it also spotlights the Black Lives Matter movement and LGBTQ rights.

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Robotic birds, magical frogs, cartoon kid join a growing group of murals in the West Loop

The mural at Lake and Peoria streets is the work of five Chicago artists.

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Next time you’re at O’Hare Airport between Terminals 2 and 3, look up

You’ll see a mosaic, installed in 2007, titled ‘On the Wings of Water.’ It’s meant to make people think about how we take care of that precious resource.

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At Bridgeport restaurant, the chef also curates the ever-changing outdoor murals

The art that decorates the walls outside Kimski, 960 W. 31st St., can change every month or so. But the message they carry is constant — that art is ‘necessary and essential.’

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More than a century old, mural portraying Jesus as Black still inspires but needs a touchup

The "Risen Christ Mural" that adorns the ceiling of Quinn A.M.E. Church on the Near South Side was painted by a church member named Proctor Chisholm in 1904.

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Gage Park parking lot, once plain, now a colorful gallery of murals

Over the last year, a series of murals have gone up in the Southwest Side neighborhood. Beauty is one aim. So are empowering young artists and celebrating Latino culture.

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Chicago artists pay tribute to MF DOOM in murals honoring rapper who died in October

One mural in Logan Square and another in the West Loop memorialize the hip-hop star. ‘I saw him as a creative muse,’ one of the mural artists says.

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Local artist aims to ‘Protect Little Village’ with public art that celebrates mask wearing

Silvia Morales’ latest work is a hyperlocal spin on the city’s "Protect Chicago" campaign that aims to mitigate the spread of the coronavirus — she calls it "Protect La Villita."

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Rogers Park mural addresses racial unrest of the past year

Artists CJ Williams and Kristianna Jacques painted "Color Through Chaos" on the side of a restaurant in response to weeks of protests in Chicago over the summer.

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From alley to gallery: Red Line viaduct in Edgewater is awash with murals

The five-block stretch has been transformed from your typical, dreary Chicago alley to an artistic showcase, the scene of more than 100 murals by over 30 artists.

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Maxwell Street mural spotlights the history of the storied market and neighborhood

Nick Goettling aimed to keep the memory of the once-bustling marketplace alive in the mural he painted on a retaining wall near 15th and Morgan streets.

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River West mural brings a bit of ‘character, life, humanity’ to the Kennedy Expressway

The giant painting by Chicago artist Joseph Perez, who goes by Sentrock, was the finishing touch on a luxury apartment building that opened in 2020.

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Near West Side alley was transformed into a drive-thru gallery with 15 new murals

The garage doors of 15 new homes on West Polk Street were covered with murals done by artists hired by the developers. More houses are planned, more murals, too.

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‘Chicago P.D.’ star LaRoyce Hawkins, local creatives bring mural — and hope — to Harvey

"Harvey World Wall" mural to provide "light" where darkness resides, Hawkins and local creatives say.

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Once-gritty Pilsen rail viaduct transformed into an outdoor gallery

More than 30 artists converged on the Peoria Street underpass in October to create art, ‘visual healing’ — from portrait-style works and wildlife imagery to abstracts.

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Former Northwestern football player Dwight White II tackles a new career as an artist

After suffering a kidney contusion during practice in 2014, he left the team and embraced art. A towering mural in the South Loop is among his latest creations.

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Chicago murals: a look back at some favorites from 2020

This past year was ugly in many ways, but artists strived to bring beauty to our streets through murals, often with a message. Here’s a snapshot.

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Mural’s message at House of Vans venue: We won’t ‘get through this all doing our own thing’

The work by Chicago artists O.J. Hays and Jae ‘An Original Peace’ Webb in the West Loop conveys ‘strength in having community and having a support system’ in troubled times.

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Artist behind ‘you are beautiful’ wants people to ‘be yourself, and that’s enough’

Chicago artist Matthew Hoffman began the project nearly 2 decades ago. His saying can be seen on signs and walls across the city and increasingly across the United States.

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Chicago artist ZorZorZor’s Pilsen mural gives former tavern a ‘warrior-like protector for the corner’

The mural at 18th Place and Throop Street also incorporates elements of the Croatian flag and a song lyric by Chicago singer-songwriter Jamila Woods.

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Chicago artist Tubs honors pandemic victims in Day of the Dead mural on Near West Side

His mother taught him calligraphy. That helped lead him to his own style of painting words — first in graffiti and now in murals.

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A pig and a steer and a whole lot of history are packed into Back of the Yards mural

Chicago artist Joe Miller tapped photos from the heyday of the old Union Stock Yard for his large-scale brick canvas at The Plant, an urban farm and food production incubator.