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Upriver

© Copyright Alessandra Kelley

The Chicago River, looking west to the State Street Bridge, rising up into a negative waterfall just past the bridge.

"Upriver" was inspired by an incident in 1992. The Michigan Avenue bridge was undergoing repairs, and on Sunday, 20th September it abruptly shot open (catapulting a small crane onto a thankfully deserted street) and fell into its counterweight pit. The normally horizontal street was stuck vertical for some months, giving a surreal appearance to the streetscape. I was attending school at the Art Institute, just down the street, at the time.

The image of the world turned sideways and confrontational stuck with me. Eventually it inspired this inverted waterfall, which is a view, more or less, of the State Street Bridge from just west of the Wabash Avenue Bridge. The prominent building on the left of the picture is the R R Donnelley Building, and at the right is Marina City.

As with most of my paintings, this is egg tempera on panel.

an arm, the elbow jutting aggressively to the left

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