Reframing Ruin features photographs of the Trail as it is now, while inviting viewers to imagine its potential benefits for all of Chicago.The exhibit is an opportunity to reflect on the ways that this railroad has captured Chicagoans’ spirit of discovery. Generations of artists have turned the embankment walls into canvases. Youths have explored the accidental nature preserve growing between the tracks. Walkers, bikers, runners and even skiers have blazed their paths, happily avoiding traffic below. And from the height of the Bloomingdale we’ve been able to see the communities along the route, and the Loop in the distance, with fresh eyes.Meanwhile, photographers have turned their lenses on this rough magic, capturing some of its grandest views and smallest details. As the park design and engineering process picks up steam, their work has inspired Friends of the Bloomingdale Trail to mount this exhibit–a look back that is intended to spark visions of the future. Reframing Ruin highlights the unique beauty artists have found in this abandoned industrial space. Our dream is for this beauty to become accessible to all as the Bloomingdale is transformed into Chicago’s next great park.
Ben Helphand, President, Friends of the Bloomingdale Trail