Luminous field millennium park

Tonight's your last chance to see the Luminous Field at Millennium Park, from 6 to 9 tonight, lighting up the area around Anish Kapoor's Cloud Gate. In practice the field is hard to see, as Luftwerk's projections draw people like moths to the Bean. On Saturday night, the audience crowded into the field, choosing to bathe in the light rathe rather than observe its framing of the sculpture. The Bean gathers the skyline into a point, and gathers Chicagoans, too—I think it's the city's Schelling point. Luminous Field gathers us in further still, wanting to be within the field of light. It's not as satisfyingly neat and abstract as it looked in the previews, but that's what happens when you open the grid up to people.

Luminous Field photograph

Lynn Becker: "Luminous Field is a compelling demonstration – at once amazing and gentle – of the convergence of art, theater and architecture in the living dynamic of a great city.  Bathing it in striking patterns, Luftwerk helps us see and feel the city which we inhabit, workaday, often unseeing and unfeeling.  A benign bug-zapper for human beings, Luminous Field's light and sound draws in the politely jostling crowd, a flash mob of interacting strangers, individual personalities whose lives may never intersect again, for a small succession of moments finding common purpose in an exercise of the delight of being alive."

Alison Booth, from "Cloud Gate":

Millennium Park, brand new

mind-boggling mix

of Imax and Maya Lin,

metallic blooms on the outsize square

where prairie and city meet lake.

Pedestrians feel like pinballs or pilgrims there.


Cloud Gate is an iconic magnet attracting and reflecting its visitors; we started envisioning how the sculpture would play with light.

We took inspiration from century Old Italian floor mosaics, the urban grid, and pedestrian symbols, like crosswalks, tessellation of MC Escher and began to animate geometric shapes and color into a luminous field.