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October 22, 2007



The Picasso sculpture at Daley Plaza in Chicago is made of COR-TEN steel. If exposed to weather for several years, COR-TEN steel forms a protective layer of rust on its surface. The rust is an integral property of the sculpture as designed and intended by its creator, Pablo Picasso.

It appears that someone has tampered with the surface of the Picasso sculpture. We feel that there should be an explanation by public officials as to what was done and why.

The exactitude of the colors and their interrelatedness is key to Agam’s work. He is an internationally recognized artist and the authenticity of this major sculpture is dependent on retaining the integrity of the original colors.

Richard Prouty

I wasn't aware that anyone was tampering with the Daley Center Picasso. I was there just a few weeks ago and it seemed fine, but I wasn't looking that closely.

I've never cared for Agam's sculpture on Michigan Avenue. The color coordination is maladroit and the form inelegant. That's not really my point, though: Picasso designed his sculpture to be outside. Agram wants his sculpture to be exempt from the effects of Chicago weather, and he's using the legal system to enforce that claim.

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What Is One-Way Street?

One-Way Street [Einbahnstrasse, 1928] was Walter Benjamin's first effort to break out of the narrow confines of the academy and apply the techniques of literary studies to life as it is currently lived. For Benjamin criticism encompasses the ordinary objects of life, the literary texts of the time, films in current release, and the fleeting concerns of the public sphere. Following Benjamin's lead, this blog is concerned with the political content of the aesthetic and representations of the political in the media. As Benjamin writes in One-Way Street, "He who cannot take sides should keep silent."