CHICAGO (CBS) — A retired DeKalb dentist has corrected a monumental oversight, by printing his own book listing all the statues and monuments in Chicago.
Dr. Donald Krehl said his book “Monumental Chicago” includes the Picasso statue at Daley Plaza, a memorial to Al Capone in Hillside, and six Abraham Lincoln statues.
WBBM Newsradio’s John Cody reports Krehl’s venture began when he was unable to locate a statue near and dear to his heart – the sculpture honoring Dr. G.V. Black, one of the founders of modern dentistry.
LISTEN: WBBM Newsradio’s John Cody reports
Krehl said he knew it was supposed to be somewhere in Lincoln Park, but he couldn’t find it.
“That’s as much as I knew. I had no idea where it was in Lincoln Park. I did some hunting on my own,” he said.
But after checking local bookstores and even the Chicago Architecture Foundation, he discovered there were no guidebooks listing all of the statues in the city.
So he started riding his bike in a search pattern through Lincoln Park, and finally came across the G.V. Black statue on North Avenue, at the head of Astor Street.
That prompted him to take his 12 megapixel Kodak camera and ride his bike around the city, cataloging the locations of about 240 statues in the city and suburbs.
Noticeably absent are popular statues like the Marilyn Monroe sculpture that graced Michigan Avenue for a year and the giant eyeball statue that sat along State Street in 2010.
Krehl said he wanted his book to focus on permanent works of art, not temporary statues that have moved from place to place.
“Marilyn, I didn’t even bother taking a picture of, because it was a temporary statue,” he said.
Krehl said his favorite and least known statue is “The Five Great Lakes” in the courtyard of the Art Institute on Michigan Avenue. He said he believes the Laredo Taft sculpture is one of the most beautiful in the city, but very few people know about it.
“Monumental Chicago” is on sale at Amazon, Barnes and Noble, and the Chicago Architecture Foundation for $16.
Krehl said he liked writing and publishing his first book about statues so much that he’s thinking of moving on to a collection about gravestones.