Forget expensive mattresses or soothing sounds: a nighttime solution for light sleepers may be something heavy. This elegant ceramic pillow—one of several such works in the museum’s collection—was a coveted item among the Chinese elite a millennium ago. Hairstyles of the time were elaborate, and it is speculated that a less-than-cushiony pillow such as this example may have allowed users to awake with their up-dos intact. The pillow’s deeply lobed sides allude to clouds, creating a dreamy surface for sleepers, while the peony blossoms—the “King of Flowers” in China and traditionally a symbol of wealth and honor—add an aspirational element to the piece. Whether you seek sweet dreams or an end to bed head, examine this blissful object in Gallery 134.
Image Credit: Cloud-Shaped Pillow with Peony Scrolls, Northern Song Dynasty (960-1127). Chinese. Lucy Maud Buckingham Collection.
11 hours 59 min ago The Art Institute of Chicago NOW OPEN—Humanism + Dynamite = The Soviet Photomontages of Aleksandr Zhitomirsky
The first exhibition in the post-Soviet world devoted to leading political artist Aleksandr Zhitomirsky offers a captivating portrayal of a satirist and loyal citizen who inventively furthered his country’s official causes across a tumultuous half-century.
13 hours 51 min ago The Art Institute of Chicago CLOSING SOON—Icelandic artist/musician Ragnar Kjartansson’s intensely durational works often manifest a rare synthesis of pathos and humor.
A Lot of Sorrow is both a music video and extended concert film, in which The National performs its ballad “Sorrow” on repeat for six hours. See the song take on new layers of meaning as the hours pass and fatigue sets in.
Closing October 16—http://bit.ly/2du3GXh
3 days 9 hours ago The Art Institute of Chicago Congratulations to the Smithsonian National Museum of African American History and Culture on their grand opening this weekend. The building, designed by architect David Adjaye, is a truly historic addition to the National Mall in Washington D.C. #APeoplesJourney #MakingHistory