Pair of elevator grilles, frieze, and overgrille
On View In:
Gallery 300
Artist:   Louis Henri Sullivan  
Title:   Pair of elevator grilles, frieze, and overgrille  
Date:   c. 1893-1894  
Medium:   Cast iron, wrought iron, copper-coated wrought iron  
Dimensions:   118 x 67 in. (299.72 x 170.18 cm) (approx. overall)  
Credit Line:   The John R. Van Derlip Fund  
Location:   Gallery 300  

The Chicago Stock Exchange Building, for which these grilles were made, was one of Adler and Sullivan's last commissions before the firm dissolved in 1895. The repeating motif of spheres on the arms of an X within ovals inside a circle is echoed in the frieze above the grille and in the overgrille. Sullivan conceived this design as a series of "seed germs" bursting from their pods, an idea found in his prose poem "Inspiration" of 1886, in which he compared the metamorphosis of a seed into a plant to that of basic forms into a structure. [need 2 copies of this label]

Name:   Sullivan, Louis Henri  
Role:   Designer  
Nationality:   American  
Life Dates:   American, 1856-1924  

Object Description  
Classification:   Architecture  
Creation Place:   North America, United States, , ,  
Accession #:   92.2a-I  
Owner:   The Minneapolis Institute of Arts