Image from the Art Institute of Chicago
Yesterday, Marc Chagall’s America Windows were reinstalled at the Art Institute of Chicago. The panels of stained glass went unseen during five years of research and conservation treatment. According to the Art Institute, this work is “one of the most beloved treasures in [the museum’s] vast collection.”
The America Windows, originally dedicated in May 1977, were made in honor of Mayor Richard J. Daley (1902–1976) and celebrated the U.S. Bicentennial. Chagall visited Chicago in 1974 and learned that the Art Institute was planning a gallery in his honor for its expansion program. He then decided to design the windows especially for the Art Institute.
Chagall collaborated with French stained-glass artist Charles Marq to create the windows. Marq made 36 glass panels, and Chagall painted the glass using metallic oxide paints. The windows are more than 8 feet high and 30 feet wide with 12 different sections.
In May 2005, the windows were taken down during museum construction. “Curators and conservators were able to work extensively on the windows during these years to clean, examine, restore, and research Chagall’s masterpiece,” according to Art Daily. Click here to read more.
And now for a little movie trivia—Chagall’s windows made an appearance in “Ferris Bueller’s Day Off” during the characters’ trip to the museum.