22 March 2011

Augustus Higginson on
The Rise of the Skyscraper in Chicago
Part II: From 1955 to the Trump Tower

Tuesday, March 22, 5:30-8:30pm
19 South Wabash, 2d floor

Cocktails at 5:30, presentation 6:00-6:30 followed by discussion and more cocktails.     $40 includes drinks, two cigars, and sandwiches. 
Reservations are required.

Chicago was the birthplace of the skyscraper, as Augustus Higginson recounted in the first half of this lecture, one year ago.  He now takes on the second half of the story.  In 1955, Richard J. Daley became mayor of Chicago. Prior to his election, nothing of significance had been built in the City for over twenty years, due in large part to the Depression and World War II. The 1950s and 60s, the years most closely associated with his tenure, saw unbridled growth and expansion in the urban landscape of America’s large cities. Chicago was no exception, as its second great skyscraper period was about to begin, this time at the hands of an entirely new group of architects. Chief among them was Ludwig Mies van der Rohe, who brought the ideas of the Bauhaus of his native Germany to America in 1938. Reshaping the campus at I.I.T. and designing the Lake Shore Drive Apartments a decade later, his philosophy of elegance through reduction became the hallmark of the new look. Soon monolithic skyscrapers began to take form at the hands of his followers, including Walter Netsch, Bruce Graham, Adrian Smith, and Charles Murphy --, their sleek glass-and-steel curtain walls soaring to new heights and changing the look of Chicago permanently.

Augustus Higginson is a local artist, architectural historian, and Cigar Society member. Born and raised in Southern California, he earned a BA at the University of California at Santa Barbara in Art History, and an MA in Architectural History from the University of California at Davis. Over the last four years Gus has made his home in Chicago, bringing together his passion for architecture both in teaching and in his unique canvases. (The painting of the Federal Center, above, is one of his recent works.)  Here he is pictured in his Lake View Studio.

March 22 - On this date in 1733, Joseph Priestly invented seltzer water, thus making possible the scotch and soda.

Coming up

Tuesday, April 5
Tony Grosch, The Ideal of Brotherhood in Four Classic Chicago Novels in the '30s and '40s.
19 S. Wabash, 2d floor.

Tuesday, April 12
Lauren Viera, New Cocktails for Spring: A Lesson in Mixology.
19 S. Wabash, 2d floor.

Tuesday, April 26
Michael Turner, God, the Multiverse, and Cosmic Arrogance.
19 S. Wabash, 2d floor.

Tuesday, May 10
Robert Wallace, Why did the Athenians Kill Socrates?
19 S. Wabash, 2d floor.

Tuesday, May 24
Alfred Rasho, Making Short Documentary Films.
19 S. Wabash, 2d floor.

In June thru August the Cigar Society will meet every nice Tuesday at the Ceres Cafe, outdoors, next to the Board of Trade Building and Jack Schwartz cigars.

About the Cigar Society of Chicago

ONE OF THE OLDEST AND greatest traditions of the city clubs of Chicago is the discussion of intellectual, social, legal, artistic, historical, scientific, musical, theatrical, and philosophical issues in the company of educated, bright, and appropriately provocative individuals, all under the beneficent influence of substantial amounts of tobacco and spirits.  The Cigar Society of Chicago embraces this tradition and extends it with its Informal Smokers, University Series lectures, and Cigar Society Dinners, in which cigars, and from time to time pipes and cigarettes, appear as an important component of our version of the classical symposium.  To be included in the Cigar Society's mailing list, write to the Secretary at CigarSociety@logicophilosophicus.org.