Best Chicago Museums

Best Chicago Museums

And memberships!
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The holidays are here. It is a time to get together with friends and family. But let's face it -- most of our holiday get-togethers are focused around eating and drinking. If you want to break out of this pattern, and get a head start on your 2018 healthier self, here are some unique ideas that go beyond your favorite restaurant and bar.

Check out the American Alliance of Museums

American Alliance of Museums will change your life if you are a museum-goer and art enthusiast! This incredible membership is easy to apply for online with a one-time payment of $50 for students, and $100 for non-students. The museum card allows year-round access to nearly all art museums in the United States. It is an amazing deal, well-worth the $$$. - So if you're late on your Christmas shopping, this makes an excellent and thoughtful gift (and no shipping required!)

Outside of the Art Institute of Chicago and Museum of Contemporary Art (MCA), there are plenty of notable galleries to check out in the city of Chicago that are absolutely free - with or without the AAM membership.

Here are a few ideas of places to check out this Holiday season!

Smart Museum of Art

David & Alfred Smart Museum of Art - University of Chicag

Art Museum/Center/Sculpture Garden

Conversations with the Collection: Building/Environments, showing works by Michael Rakowitz, Boris Fedorovich Rybchenkov, and Mark Rothko.

DePaul Art Museum

DePaul Art Museum

Art Museum/Center/Sculpture Garden

Closed for installation - Winter exhibition opens January 11

Gallery 400

University of Illinois Chicago Gallery 400

Art Museum/Center/Sculpture Garden

"Traduttore, Traditore," roughly translating to "translator, traitor," brings together a group of artists from around the world who employ processes of translation to expose, question, and challenge global circuits of economic and cultural capital.

LUMA

Loyola University Museum of Art

Art Museum/Center/Sculpture Garden

LUMA has four shows on exhibit - Beam It Out/Bring It In, The Craft of the Crèche: Materials and Techniques, Art and Faith of the Creche: The Collection of James and Emilia Govan, and Gilded Glory: European Treasures from the Martin D’Arcy, S.J. Collection.

National Museum of Mexican Art

National Museum of Mexican Art

Art Museum/Center/Sculpture Garden

Now on display: Nuestras Historias: Stories of Mexican Identity, Placemaking & Landmarks: The Creation of Mexican Spaces in la Dieciocho (Pilsen), Chicago Gallery,Day of the Dead: Tilica y flaca es la calaca, Main Gallery, Luis Tapia: Sculpture as Sanctuary, Rubin & Paula Torres Gallery.


MoCP

Museum of Contemporary Photography

Art Museum/Center/Sculpture Garden

The MoCP is currently closed for installation.

National Veterans Art Museum

National Veterans Art Museum
Art Museum/Center/Sculpture Garden


Above & Beyond is currently on view at Harold Washington Library Center in downtown Chicago.

Intuit

Intuit: The Center for Intuitive & Outsider Art

Art Museum/Center/Sculpture Garden

Now on Display: In the Land of Pasaquan: The Story of Eddie Owens Martin, Henry Darger's Orphans and the Construction of Race, Winter Scenes from the Intuit Collection.

Ukrainian Institute of Modern Art

Ukrainian Institute of Modern Art

Art Museum/Center/Sculpture Garden

Curated by Roman Hrab, CIM is an exhibition that plays on the notion of the collective, and what cultural and ethnic topographies bind first and second generation Ukrainian-American and Ukrainian born artists from the New York City area.

Cover Image Credit: @artinstitutechi

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A Playlist From The iPod Of A Middle Schooler In 2007

I will always love you, Akon.
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Something happened today that I never thought in a million years would happen. I opened up a drawer at my parents' house and I found my pink, 4th generation iPod Nano. I had not seen this thing since I graduated from the 8th grade, and the headphones have not left my ears since I pulled it out of that drawer. It's funny to me how music can take you back. You listen to a song and suddenly you're wearing a pair of gauchos, sitting on the bleachers in a gym somewhere, avoiding boys at all cost at your seventh grade dance. So if you were around in 2007 and feel like reminiscing, here is a playlist straight from the iPod of a middle schooler in 2007.

1. "Bad Day" — Daniel Powter

2. "Hips Don't Lie" — Shakira ft. Wyclef Jean

SEE ALSO: 23 Iconic Disney Channel Moments We Will Never Forget

3. "Unwritten" — Natasha Bedingfield

4. "Run It!" — Chris Brown

5. "Girlfriend" — Avril Lavigne

6. "Move Along" — All-American Rejects

7. "Fergalicious" — Fergie

8. "Every Time We Touch" — Cascada

9. "Ms. New Booty" — Bubba Sparxxx

10. "Chain Hang Low" — Jibbs

11. "Smack That" — Akon ft. Eminem

12. "Waiting on the World to Change" — John Mayer

13. "Stupid Girls" — Pink

14. "Irreplaceable" — Beyonce

15. "Umbrella" — Rihanna ft. Jay-Z

16. "Don't Matter" — Akon

17. "Party Like A Rockstar" — Shop Boyz

18. "This Is Why I'm Hot" — Mims

19. "Beautiful Girls" — Sean Kingston

20. "Bartender" — T-Pain

21. "Pop, Lock and Drop It" — Huey

22. "Wait For You" — Elliot Yamin

23. "Lips Of An Angel" — Hinder

24. "Face Down" — Red Jumpsuit Apparatus

25. "Chasing Cars" — Snow Patrol

26. "No One" — Alicia Keys

27. "Cyclone" — Baby Bash ft. T-Pain

28. "Crank That" — Soulja Boy

29. "Kiss Kiss" — Chris Brown

SEE ALSO: 20 Of The Best 2000's Tunes We Still Know Every Word To

30. "Lip Gloss" — Lil' Mama

Cover Image Credit: http://nd01.jxs.cz/368/634/c6501cc7f9_18850334_o2.jpg

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My AP Environmental Science Class' Cookie Mining Experiment Shows Why Capitalism Is Destroying The Planet

Who cares about the environment with profits this high?

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With the AP exams in May approaching quickly, my AP Environmental Science class has wasted no time in jumping right into labs. To demonstrate the damage to the environment done by strip mining, we were instructed to remove the chocolate chips from cookies.

The experiment in itself was rather simple. We profited from fully or partially extracted chips ($8 for a full piece and $4 for a partial) and lost from buying tools, using time and area and incurring fines.

This might seem simplistic, but it showcased the nature of disastrous fossil fuel companies.

We were fined a $1 per minute we spent mining. It cost $4 per tool we bought (either tweezers or paper clips) and 50 cents for every square centimeter of cookie we mined.

Despite the seemingly overbearing charges compared to the sole way to profit, it was actually really easy to profit.

If we found even a partial chocolate chip per minute, that's $3 profit or utilization elsewhere. Tools were an investment that could be made up each with a partial chip, and clearly we were able to find much, much more than just one partial chip per tool.

Perhaps the most disproportionally easiest thing to get around were the fines. We were liable to be fined for habitat destruction, dangerous mining conditions with faulty tools, clutter, mess and noise level. No one in the class got fined for noise level nor faulty tools, but we got hit with habitat destruction and clutter, both of which added up to a mere $6.

We managed to avoid higher fines by deceiving our teacher by pushing together the broken cookie landscapes and swiping away the majority of our mess before being examined for fining purposes. This was amidst all of our cookies being broken into at least three portions.

After finding many, many chips, despite the costs of mining, we profited over $100. We earned a Franklin for destroying our sugary environment.

We weren't even the worst group.

It was kind of funny the situations other groups simulated to their cookies. We were meant to represent strip mining, but one group decided to represent mountaintop removal. Mountaintop removal is where companies go to extract resources from the tops of mountains via explosions to literally blow the tops off. This group did this by literally pulverizing their cookies to bits and pieces with their fists.

They incurred the maximum fine of $45. They didn't profit $100, however.

They profited over $500 dollars.

In the context of our environmental science class, these situations were anywhere from funny to satisfying. In the context of the real world, however, the consequences are devastating our environment.

Without even mentioning the current trajectory we're on approaching a near irreversible global temperature increase even if we took drastic measures this moment, mining and fracking is literally destroying ecosystems.



We think of earthquakes as creating mass amounts of sudden movement and unholy deep trenches as they fracture our crust. With dangerous mining habits, we do this ourselves.

Bigger companies not even related to mining end up destroying the planet and even hundreds of thousands of lives. ExxonMobil, BP? Still thriving in business after serial oil spills over the course of their operation. Purdue Pharma, the company who has misled the medical community for decades about the effects of OxyContin and its potential for abuse, is still running and ruining multitudes more lives every single day.

Did these companies receive fines? Yes.

But their business model is too profitable to make the fines have just about any effect upon their operation.

In our cookie mining simulation, we found that completely obliterating the landscape was much more profitable than being careful and walking on eggshells around the laws. Large, too-big-to-fail companies have held the future of our planet in their greedy paws and have likewise pulverized our environment, soon enough to be unable to return from.

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