Free events at Daley Plaza under the Picasso. The Department of Cultural Affairs and Special Events presents FREE cultural programs year round in Daley Plaza under the Picasso.
When: Performances begin @ 12 Noon (Schedule is subject to change). Select dates. Schedule below.
Where: Daley Civic Center, 50 W. Washington (Corner of Washington and Dearborn Streets).
Friday, July 9, 2021 12:00 pm – 1:00 pm The Bahamas Consulate of Chicago will be hosting a flag raising ceremony.
Monday, July 12, 2021 12:00 pm – 1:00 pm The Return of House on the Plaza: A DJ event showcasing Chicago House Music and maybe a touch of Disco.
Tuesday, July 13, 2021 12:00 pm – 1:00 pm Kings and Queens of Poetry: Words of Poetry.
Monday, July 19, 2021 12:00 pm – 1:00 pm Queens of House Lunch Hour Jam: Queens of House is a group made up of professional female DJ’s specializing in the House/Disco for family friendly fun and dancing.
Friday, July 23, 2021 12:00 pm – 1:00 pm Line Dancing: Kenny DJG Experience will be playing line dancing music.
Tuesday, July 27, 2021 12:00 pm – 1:00 pm Chicago Sizzle Radio: Chicago DJ Music Set- House Funk Disco.
Wednesday, July 28, 2021 12:00 pm – 1:00 pm Peruvian Independence Day Celebration: The Peruvian Arts Society will be hosting a flag raising ceremony at Daley Plaza from 12-1 pm.
How did the Picasso end up in Daley Plaza? Per the City of Chicago website:
The Chicago Picasso was commissioned in 1963 by the architects of the Richard J. Daley Center to anchor the plaza on the east side of the building. Most public art in large cities at this time was calm and stoic, mainly depicting historical figures, but in the 1960s, architecture in American cities began to reflect the many cultural and modern changes taking place throughout the country. The Daley Center’s architects decided to commission the renowned Spanish artist, Pablo Picasso, to create a monumental sculpture for their plaza.
Picasso worked on this commission for two years, combining and modifying sketches and motifs from some of his earlier works in the design of the sculpture. This resulted in a 42-inch tall maquette, or model, of the sculpture. Both the maquette and sketches of the sculpture may be seen today at the Art Institute of Chicago.
The Chicago Picasso is built of Cor-Ten steel, the same material as the exterior of the Daley Center, and was assembled not far from Chicago at the U.S. Steel Company in Gary, Indiana. On August 15, 1967, thousands of people gathered in Daley Plaza to witness the unveiling and dedication of the city’s newest piece of public art. In his dedication letter, Picasso gave the sculpture as a gift to the people of Chicago, without ever explaining what the sculpture was intended to represent.
Standing 50 feet tall and weighing over 160 tons, the Chicago Picasso in Daley Plaza is much more than just artwork to Chicagoans. The untitled Picasso sculpture that originally sparked controversy in the city has now become one of Chicago’s most famous sculptures and beloved icons.