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2015 Fall Culture Preview

The 10 Most Anticipated Events at the Chicago Architecture Biennial

Interior of Wingspread, a stop on the SC Johnson tour

The Chicago Architecture Biennial is a three-month celebration of contemporary architecture, modeled after the Venice Biennale and organized by Chicago’s Department of Cultural Affairs and Special Events and the Graham Foundation. The hub of the action: the Chicago Cultural Center, which will display sketches, photos, and models from 100-plus architects, artists, and designers around the globe. Partner institutions are hosting dozens of related events (talks, tours, art shows. . .). Chaotic? Maybe. Interesting? You bet. All events run October 3 to January 3 unless otherwise indicated.

1 Bold: Alternative Scenarios for Chicago

Skidmore, Owings & Merrill, Landon Bone Baker Architects, and others
Chicago Cultural Center
Twenty local architecture firms and artists show their proposals to improve Chicago, from filling 15,000 empty lots with communal kitchens and gardens to reversing the Chicago River. Free. mas-studio.com

2 Polis Station

Studio Gang Architects
Chicago Cultural Center
See sketches and models of police stations reimagined by the award-winning Chicago architect Jeanne Gang, whose designs are meant to foster trust between residents and officers. Free. chicagoarchitecturebiennial.org

3 Making Place

David Adjaye
Art Institute
Climb inside the brain of the hot British-Ghanaian architect at this large exhibit of his renderings, photographs, and Art Deco–influenced furniture. $25. artic.edu

4 We Know How to Order

South Shore Drill Team
Federal Plaza
Conceived by architect Bryony Roberts and choreographer Asher Waldron, this performance has a precision that echoes Mies van der Rohe’s designs. October 2 at 5:30 p.m. and October 3 at 12:30 and 1 p.m. Free. chicagoarchitecturebiennial.org

Photo by Ania Jaworska
image: Courtesy of Ania Jaworska

5 Chicago Works

Ania Jaworska
Museum of Contemporary Art
The Polish-born architect and designer creates kooky sculptures that play with traditional structures, such as arches and obelisks. Through January 31. $12. mcachicago.org

6 Tesseracts of Time

Steven Holl and Jessica Lang
Harris Theater
With sets by New York City architect Holl and choreography by Lang, this new collaborative work explores the concepts of space, light, and time. November 6 at 8 p.m. $35 to $125. harristheaterchicago.org

7 Architecture + Art: Inspiration Amplified

Iñigo Manglano-Ovalle and Mary Ellen Childs
Farnsworth House
Stroll the Mies landmark in Plano and listen to a quartet for strings composed by Childs as you admire multimedia artist Manglano-Ovalle’s new sculpture, made of wood from nearby trees. $20. farnsworthhouse.org

8 The Infinite Happiness

Ila Bêka and Louise Lemoine
Chicago International Fim Festival
Consider this feature-length documentary, directed by Bêka and Lemoine, a 21-day diary of residents living in Copenhagen’s figure eight–shaped 8 House, a mixed-use development designed by Danish architect Bjarke Ingels. chicagofilmfestival.com

9 Tour of the SC Johnson Campus

Frank Lloyd Wright
This is your chance to see some of the best pieces of corporate architecture anywhere, and they’re all located in nearby Racine, Wisconsin; a free shuttle takes you there and back. Tours leave the Cultural Center at 10 a.m. from Thursday to Sunday. Free. scjohnson.com/visit

10 Three full-scale houses

Tatiana Bilbao, MOS Architects, and Vo Trong Nghia Architects
Chicago Cultural Center
Marvel at the ingenious designs of these innovative houses, including a single-story bungalow with a construction price of $4,000. Free. chicagoarchitecturebiennial.org

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