Story Behind the Faces of Millennium Park

Everyone who has wandered the paths of Millennium Park knows about the unique structures that reside there.  Some of the most popular are the two structures that show faces and occasionally spout water, which cast shadows over the armies of children splashing in the water on hot summer days. But the story behind how these pieces came to be is almost as interesting as the pieces themselves.

Crown Fountain is an interactive work of public art, which was designed by Jaume Plensa.  Its tall structures on either end of the reflecting pool show Chicago residents’ faces, first smiling then pursing their lips as water spurts out of a pipe, making it look like the water is spouting from the mouth.

Plensa was inspired by the water-spouting gargoyles of Europe when he was designing this fun and interactive element.  He also wanted to show the diversity of Chicago by putting faces of many ages and ethnicities, and by allowing the faces to be updated throughout the years.

This piece was controversial before it was even constructed.  Some thought that the tall towers would destroy the Millennium Park’s aesthetic.  It was in the news when security cameras were attached to the top of each tower.  But now the controversy is over and it is firmly a part of Chicago’s culture and loved by residents and tourists alike.

The Fine Art Studio of Rotblatt-Amrany is proud to be located so closely to the great city of Chicago. The city is full of wonderful pieces of art, including pieces by our studio artists! If you have not yet seen the faces of Millennium Park, go check it out!