Lincoln Park Neighbors Concerned About Big Blue Sculpture

CHICAGO (CBS) — It is big, it’s blue, and it sprang up out of nowhere and people living in the Lincoln Park neighborhood said Wednesday that they want to know why a giant statue has been erected in their neighborhood.

CBS 2’s Mike Parker reports that the statue went up Friday at Burling Street and Armitage Avenue. A viewer contacted CBS 2 on Wednesday to find out why.

The blue behemoth, a huge steel sculpture, said to have been made by artist John Henry, sits in the walled courtyard of a new home under construction at Burling and Armitage.

It appears to be about 40 feet tall. Neighbor Evelyn McCullen said she is worried about it.

“It does look unsafe from the standpoint of, if there are large beams hanging over on the sidewalk, in the wintertime you’re going to have icicles forming,” she said. “The water’s just going to go running down there, these icicles are going to be hanging out over the sidewalk.”

As all art is supposed to do, the sculpture had neighbors talking.

“I think if, you know, they can do it and they can afford it, more power to them. It’s not an eyesore or anything, it’s beautiful,” one woman said.

“It really engages my emotions, at least, and if that’s the purpose of art, then it’s very successful,” one man said.

CBS 2 caught up with the owner and the architect as they left the property Wednesday night. The architect would say only, “it’s art.”

One neighbor said, “I think everybody has their own tastes. … You know, I’m kind of indifferent about it, I think it’s unique.”

McCullen said she is concerned that the overhanging beams are not up to code. She said she’s reached out to Ald. Michelle Smith (43rd) about it, but hasn’t heard back.

CBS 2 also tried to contact the alderman’s office, but messages have not yet been returned.

More from Mike Parker
  • tom Sharp

    More proof that some people just have too much money! There are tens of thousands of poor, hungry people in this town and this nitwit, in stead of doing something useful to help, wastes at least 6 figures on this piece of garbage. Can’t wait for the first big ice storm–look out below!

    • bob Henning

      Now thats Funny, People in the Windy Ghetto dodge stray bullets on a daily basis. Chicago has to be one of the most VIOLENT CITYS in America, and people are worried about their safety from this INANTIMATE OBJECT.

      Guess you must have missed the Headline about Five Men being Murdered in Alt something or other Gardens.

    • OLD VET


      • tom Sharp

        Hey moron, I can name about 10,000 things rich people can’t do with their money and getting your IQ above village idiot is one of them!

      • Ed P

        Just the fact that you call anyone a moron just prooves what type of person you are.

    • FG

      Using their money to employ people isn’t helping the economy?

  • zaman

    not a big deal, city building inspector know how to get it down , write few violation and send him 400 W Superior .

  • Phil

    Children getting shot at daily, thousands are poor and hungry, medication rates skyrocketing, city is broke and McCullen wants us to worry about a piece of art she finds annoying. I’m sure she would not complain if it were the Picasso like the one in front of Daley Plaza. Lady, get on with your life. Find something to do that will benefit the city and get your nose out of the air.

    • ed


  • lon

    it stinks, it has no appeal and should be taken down-it is a disgustiing eyesore.
    that’s art?????? of course the alderman doesn’t respond-when do they ever?

    • Jim

      You took the words out of my mouth!

      • ed

        Very ignorant words I might add. How is this hurting anyone?

      • Mr. Orange

        Ignorant words

  • franklin808

    This is art! As long as the government is spending money, jobs are being created. This is a WIN-WIN situation for all involved.

  • Crystal

    I like the activism, the reaching out, the blogs, the energy. Here’s what I’d like to see though… how about investing that time and those resources to a cause that really matters (like homelessness, hunger, Occupy Wall St.?!?!?!) This is a neighborhood full of people with resources and it would be wonderful to see them take up a worthy cause; one that could really stand to gain some attention. Never underestimate a group of passionate people – the energy is contagious and the results can move mountains. So come on Lincoln Park – get behind something that really needs your talent!!!!

    • Ed P

      You got it Crystal! Great post!

      • tom Sharp

        Hey Ed, “moron” is the right word for this guy. Crystal and I have it right, you, the “old vet,” and and the nitwit that wasted six figures on pieces of distorted metal in stead of using the money to help people in need are wrong!

  • tippy lincoln park

    relax Evilyn….

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