Cloud Gate

The couple stood in front of the bright shiny sculpture piece in Millennium Park on a cold winter’s day looking at themselves in various poses. They laughed and like so many Chicogoans took selfies in front of the piece everyone calls, “The Bean.” However, the actual name for the mirrored piece is, Cloud Gate, named by the artist Anish Kapoor.

This young couple was joined by many other people taking pictures and looking at themselves in the mirror. There was a diversity of folks admiring the piece, or , admiring themselves, but, the one thing that stood out was they were all American. At least the majority of them confessed to be when asked.

American. Yes, very American. We as a nation are obsessed with looking at ourselves. We pose, we smile, we cry, we look sexy in front of our phones, and we see ourselves for what we really are; self-absorbed fools. And, we can’t wait to send out pictures of ourselves to the world -wide audience we’ve created on Facebook, Twitter, TikTok, Instagram and so on.

But, is this Kapoor’s fault? Did he want to show us for what we really are? Or, did he want to create a piece of art that reflects the various personalities that make up a city? Not sure. All I can say is, is this art? Yes. Do I have to like it? No.

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