This week I experienced a touch of humor, humanity and history all in the course of three hours. I could have been reading a wonderful novel, but this time I wasn't reading but walking Michigan Avenue near Millennium Park. Within three blocks there are three photography exhibits installed at three cultural institutions for free*.
Columbia College houses the Museum of Contemporary Photography where there is currently an exhibit of John Baldessari abstract prints. I smiled through the exhibit of photographs decorated with bright circles of color but struggled with the meaning behind the works. Lucky for me the Chicago Tribune was on my heals and a review appeared in the newspaper the next day.
Next stop was a photographic review of San Francisco in the 70's. Chicago born photographer Jerry Pritikin has an exhibit at the Gage Gallery of Roosevelt University. His photographs are of the people of Castro Street and the Gay Rights movement. The producers of the film Milk must have received inspiration from photos like these.
Last on my tour that day was the massive exhibit at the Art Institute, of the prolific and peripatetic photo journalist Henri Cartier-Bresson from the 1930's - 1970s. This photographer captured moving moments of history like the funeral of Gandhi to mundane scenes of a picnic in a park.
*The Art Institute currently has free admission on Thursday evenings.