Currently in Production
The Murals is currently in production. This is the story of the New Deal Era Murals at the Uptown Post office in Chicago, IL.
These Murals were produced by
Henry Varnum Poor, one of the greatest artists of the 20th Century.
These painted on tiles feature Priminent Chicagoans-Carl Sandburg and Louis Sullivan.
Poor won a contest that was sponsored by the Section of Fine Arts (Not WPA, but during the same time)
The contest was moderated by the head of the Art Institute of Chicago at the time Daniel Rich.
Produced at Crow House in New City NY in 1942, these Murals were installed most likely in 1943.
Henry Varnum Poor was a prominent painter, ceramacist, and muralist in the early 20th century. He was trained as an artist in France as a young man. He was an industrious artist who worked in different mediums, and also built his own house. He worked in the Murals medium for the government and private enterprises.
Carl Sandburg was an American Poet, Writer, Film reviewer, and folk Musician. He won 3 Pulitzer Prizes. His produced many volumes of poetry including "Chicago Poems" which was written only a few blocks from this post office.
Louis Sullivan was an American architect and has been called the father of the modern skyscraper. Considered one of the most influential creators of modern architecture. He won the AIA Gold Medal.
Working on this project has taken us from Chicago to New York to Washington D.C. and back. Along the way we have met some interesting people who have a connection to Poor, Sandburg, or Sullivan.
What is clear is that these artists remain terribly relevant and have a clear connection to people in this time. The facts might be lost to history, but the impact of the artists and their work remains.
The Post Office so far has been very helpful and cordial. The people we have interviewed have been generous with their time. The sites we have seen have been very interesting. Sometimes the back story of the project is more interesting than the project!