A Chicago-themed hotel, a whole lot of pennies and other design finds this week

SHARE A Chicago-themed hotel, a whole lot of pennies and other design finds this week
SHARE A Chicago-themed hotel, a whole lot of pennies and other design finds this week

As a rookie design reporter, I spend a lot of time looking at things, feeling walls contemplatively, and asking a lot of difficult questions, like “What would you call this color?” and “May I sit in that chair for important research purposes?”

Every week, I’m sharing five things I’ve seen in the Chicago design world, and a little bit about what I learned from them.

1. Kinzie Hotel

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I did a walkthrough of the Amalfi Hotel, which will open as the Chicago-themed Kinzie Hotel early next year. The redesign will strip down the festive Italian decor to make the hotel airier and more modular, with a muted palette of silver, slate grays, dark blues and white, with touches of wood.

2. ‘The Way of the Shovel’

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I visited the Museum of Contemporary Art’s new exhibition, “The Way of the Shovel, “which “re-imagines the art world as an alternative History Channel.” Here’s Moyra Davey’s “Copperheads,” a grid of photographs of pennies. The piece explores the value and simultaneous decay of money. Or something like that.

3. Forum Studio

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I visited Forum Studio‘s Chicago office last week, which they designed themselves with Gensler’s Carlos Martinez. Everything in the space is stunning — from a reclaimed wood “treehouse” to a piece by Theaster Gates (I’m a big fan). Thought about asking if I could move right in to that lounge.

4. The Small CMS

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Adrian Holovaty (founder of EveryBlock) and Max Temkin (founder of Cards Against Humanity) announced a new project, The Small CMS, a reimagined content management system that makes website editing easier for non-developers. The service should launch next year.

5. Dream Boat

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Luke Mogelson’s New York Times piece, “Dream Boat,” is just visually stunning.

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