Cigar Society of Chicago
Public Art in
                                    Chicago, with Rob Wetherald and
                                    Laura Sterkel

Cities and public art have long been connected. From the ancient world until today, public art has been used to memorialize events, pay tribute to greatness, express culture and adorn public spaces. Since the rise of mass tourism in the 19th century, public art has been increasingly used by cities to attract new residents and visitors. Chicago most definitely sought to provide a spectacle worthy of global attention. With the shift from an industrial to a post-modern economy, art- and culture-driven growth has become an increasingly important part of Chicago’s public identity. Artistic public works, like waterfront plazas, public squares, sculpture gardens and world-class museums have become currency in attracting global tourism and business.  Remember Cows on Parade and Cool Globes?!  Over this summer, it became apparent how public art is viewed through a contemporary lens to understand history in the context of the present day

Tuesday, November 10, 2020
5:30-7:00 pm CDT

Sign in 5:00-5:30 pm for informal cigar and cocktail chatter.
The event will be called to order at 5:30.
There will be a Q&A session following the lecture. Audience participation is invited.
The event will conclude at 7 pm.
An optional cocktail party and discussion will continue after the event.
Be sure to have your cocktails and cigars at ready hand.

Register for this event.

A long-time Chicago Cigar Society member, Rob Wetherald is an architect with a long career managing international real estate portfolios for companies that include Kemper, Zurich, Deutsche Bank and Oracle. This work afforded him the opportunity to visit and explore the architecture, art and culture of great cities around the world. In these roles Rob also assembled several large-scale corporate art collections. Rob served on the board of the Frank Lloyd Wright Preservation Trust, and during his tenure as chairman the Trust acquired and renovated Wright’s Robie House, which is situated on the campus of the University of Chicago.

An enthusiastic lover of the arts, Laura Sterkel holds a degree in Art History and Government from Smith College. Professionally, Laura leads the Executive Coaching and Leadership Development practice for Challenger, Gray & Christmas. She has been involved with a number of arts and cultural organizations, including the Arts & Business Council of Philadelphia and Chicago, Cleveland Museum of Fine Arts and St. Louis Art Museum. She was a student docent at the Smith College Museum of Art and is currently a docent at the American Writers Museum in Chicago. Laura and Rob have travelled extensively and are enthusiastic supporters of theater and the arts.

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