Cloud Gate

Cloud Gate

Chicago, Anish Kapoor

Since its commissioning in 2006, Cloud Gate has become one of the world’s best known artworks. 

On a visit to Chicago in 2016 I chatted with Matt Nielsen and Scott Stewart of the Millennium Park Trust about its impact on the city.

The product of the vision of Mayor Daly, Millennium Park and its centrepiece Cloud Gate generate massive economic benefits for Chicago, attracting around 5 million visitors a year. That tourism boost represents an additional 1.5 billion  annually for the city’s economy. 

The impact has been so great that Chicago now speaks of The Millennium Park Effect. In the short time since the park was built, it is estimated that 10 billion dollars’ worth of real estate development has taken place in areas of close proximity to the park that capitalise on the enhanced views and amenity it creates.  

Beyond its tangible value, Cloud Gate has become an icon of Chicago, creating an identity of place of immeasurable value.

Lessons from Cloud Gate inform my work almost every day – particularly when people ask anachronistic questions about  the ‘value of art’.