April 26, 2001
Vol. 20 No. 15

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    Time is of the essence

    In addition to the enhancements that the Midway Plaisance Master Plan will bring to the Midway, the Chicago Park District and the Art Institute of Chicago are restoring the Fountain of Time in Washington Park at the Midway’s west boundary on Cottage Grove Avenue. One hundred figures representing the journey from birth to old age proceed in a line in front of a sculpture of Father Time on the other side of a reflecting pool. Sculptor Andrzej Dajnowski (below) and a team from the Art Institute of Chicago, including Head Objects Conservator Barbara Hall (at left), have spent the past eight years restoring the fountain inch by inch. The work is done entirely by hand, as was the original effort by sculptor Lorado Taft and 20 assistants, during their work from 1907 to 1920. Taft settled for concrete, but his original plan called for a granite sculpture that would also have included a matching Fountain of Creation at the east boundary of the Midway with bridges in between. The fountain was a tribute to 100 years of peace between the United States and Canada and has been a Hyde Park landmark for the last 81 years.