Recently I took a trip to Chicago. I had a job interview for a textile artist position, and I'm pretty positive I didn't get the job because I never heard back from the interviewer after my follow up email. However, the trip was not a complete loss because I stayed for almost a week in my cousin's apartment in the South Loop and did plenty of exploring around the city.
I had been to Chicago countless times before; my hometown is only about 5 hours away. I have also been to the Art Institute of Chicago countless times, but I always see something new when I visit. This time, they were featuring a show called Windows on the War, a collection of Soviet war posters by Soviet Union’s news agency, TASS. Since I recently finished an MFA program in illustration, the posters were right up my alley. Mainly satirical, they featured anthropomorphic images of Hitler as several different animals, ie. a rat, dog. They were meant to bolster support for the WWII Soviet war effort and many featured symbols of the Allies working together against Hitler. The metaphors used were biting and clever, and the culled collection of posters showed how art was successfully used as a weapon. The work was such influential propaganda that FDR called for similar work to be advertised in the US.
Here is one picture I took with my phone:
I loved the graphic quality, the simple color use, and the way the artist took liberties with the portraits, but they are still recognizable likenesses of Mussolini and Hitler.
See more of the posters at this link: /http://tass-posters.tumblr.com/
Also while I was there, I visited the Museum of Contemporary Art. The collection was small, though there were some nice Albers' Homages hanging. I walked around, trying to drop off my postcards to art directors, and I stopped into a cool Jazz record store and a used bookstore. I also sketched. Here is a sketch of Millenium Park.