Logan Square Landscapes: Art and Tour

Our first Detour of 2014 will be “Saturated Landscape,” a special afternoon event of an art exhibition and tour in Logan Square on Saturday, February 15. In addition to our recurring public walking tours, these one-off Detour special events usually partner with awesome experts and organizations to design unique experiences that share Chicago architecture, history and culture from new angles.

I love putting these special events together because it gives me an excuse to collaborate with people, learn new things, and dig into the archives for in-depth research.

logan square chicago architecture houses diversey
Photo credit: Amanda Scotese

Art Exhibit from Azimuth Projects Gallery

For this Detour we have partnered with Azimuth Projects Gallery. The two-part experience of “Saturated Landscape,” held at their apartment gallery at 2704 N. Whipple St. from 2pm-5pm, combines an intimate exhibition of landscape-inspired artwork (curated by Azimuth) with a walking tour of the everyday landscape of the Logan Square neighborhood (designed by Chicago Detours). For the art exhibit we’ll experience art that has been inspired by landscapes, and then on the walking tour we’ll go outside and interpret the landscape around us.

For the exhibit, Azimuth Projects Director Helen Maurene Cooper has curated works that illustrate the metamorphosis of landscapes that results from the growth, layering and juxtaposition of natural and manmade materials. To give you a little background, the curatorial project of Azimuth Projects has produced artist talks, supper club parties and conceptual nail art events.

I’ve been to Maurene’s special events, and they bring people together for memorable activities that go well beyond just the standard art opening (the cookies alone for Feb. 15 will be worth a trek in the snow – I’ve sampled them and it’s true).

madeleine baily landscape art azimuth logan square
From the series: “Licking the sunrise from a setting dawn (if people thought as little of me as I thought of them then what was love” by Madeleine Bailey

Come to the apartment gallery, and you’ll see the latest works of artists Peter Cardone and Madeleine Bailey. Cardone has pairs of large format photographs that show a two-part process of first photographing an overgrown lot, and then clearing the location for a second image. Bailey, who is captivated by histories and mythologies of flying and falling, sky and air, makes mixed media work that layers paper and photographs of landscapes at different times of day to capture subtle shifts in location and time.

Logan Square Walking “Detour”

logan square lawn ornaments chicago architecture tour
Photo credit: Amanda Scotese

Because the 2:15pm walking tour of Logan Square is already filling up, we have added an additional time slot. Two limited groups of 18 can experience the walk at either 2:15pm-3:15pm (few spots left) or 4:00pm-5:00pm. The tour requires advance reservations from our website. The $12 ticket includes Katherine Anne Confections hot chocolate for the walk, hand warmers, post card gift, and a $20 gift card for a future tour with us of interior architecture or historic bars. Attendance to the art exhibition is free.

The challenge of designing a walking tour of the everyday landscape and architecture has been to make something so mundane into something interesting. Like any of our guided tours of architecture, history and culture, we pride ourselves on being smart but also sharing intriguing perspectives, concepts and stories that go beyond dry dates, names, facts and figures.

This tour is inspired by D.W. Meinig’s “The Beholding Eye,” which considers the different perspectives from which we interpret the unseen processes and messages of the landscape. And I promise you it will be quite fascinating to dig up some surprising ideas on how we relate to the world around us in our regular Chicago lives.

We’ll talk about the tour and its topics – which range from the engineering underground to why the Midwest landscape is considered so boring – in a second blog post next week.

– Amanda Scotese, Chicago Detours Executive Director



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Private Tour Coordinator and Tour Guide

There is no shortage of things to discover in Chicago—I love being an urban explorer and uncovering its hidden places. I have an MA in Public History from Loyola University Chicago, and I have worked as a museum educator and kindergarten teacher. My desire to learn new things fuels my passion for educating others, which I get to experience every day as a Chicago tour guide. I live in the northern neighborhood of Rogers Park.

“Our guide Ellen was exceptional and gifted with a great personal touch.”


Tour Guide

Whether you are a first-time visitor or a lifelong resident, the vibrant history and modern majesty of Chicago never ceases to amaze. I’m a graduate of Columbia College with an M.A. in Interdisciplinary Art. I’ve worked for many years as an educator at City Colleges of Chicago. As tour guide at Chicago Detours, I integrate my enthusiasm for culture and architecture with my passion as an educator. West Town/Noble Square area is home for me.

“Jen was a perfect storyteller and kept us spellbound for hours.”


Tour Guide

With our Chicago neighborhoods, vibrant cultural institutions and nearly two centuries of larger-than-life stories, there’s never a dull moment here! I’m a fifth generation Chicagoan and a graduate of Washington University in St. Louis. In addition to guiding tours, I’m a creative writer and amateur genealogist. I also enjoy the city’s dynamic theater scene. You can also read overlooked stories from 19th-century newspapers on my “Second Glance History” blog. I live in River North.


Tour Guide

Chicago is unique as it always evolves into the future while holding on to the past. I’m fascinated by how people latch on to old architecture but happily pave over others. My background is in theater and performance and I’ve been a tour guide here for more than 10 years. Currently I’m finishing my Master’s in Public History at Loyola University because I love to teach the history of this scrappy city. I’m in the Edgewater neighborhood.


Operations Coordinator and Tour Guide

Chicago’s history is so fascinating, you could spend a lifetime uncovering its secrets…I’m willing to give it a try! I have an M.A. in US History from the University of Nevada-Las Vegas and then pursued doctoral studies in Urban History at the University of Illinois at Chicago. I love to learn new aspects of Chicago’s rich history and then share my knowledge as a tour guide with Chicago Detours. I live in Ravenswood.

“Marie was a bubbling fountain of information and contagious enthusiasm.”


Operations Coordinator and Tour Guide

As a fourth generation Chicagoan, I have been living and loving Chicago by bike, on foot, public transit or automobile. I am a graduate of UIC where through the College of Urban Planning and Public Affairs, began my eagerness to understand the nature, history and impacts of urban planning and development. It is incredibly rewarding to give back to this wonderful city by helping out in the office of Chicago Detours. I live in the incredibly diverse neighborhood of Albany Park.
“Sonny was extremely knowledgeable about all things Chi-town.”
Wade K


Content Manager and Tour Guide

Chicago has so many neighborhoods, buildings, and by-ways that it’s hard to go long without seeing something new, or something familiar from a new angle. I studied Cinema History for my M.A. from the University of Chicago. I’ve worked as a culture writer for various publications and as an educator of the humanities at the City Colleges of Chicago. I’m thrilled to share my love of this city’s busy past and unique architectural spaces with Chicago Detours. I live in the Chicago neighborhood of Lincoln Park.

“Alex was fascinating to listen to. He clearly knows his history and it shows.”
Katie K

Amanda Scotese

Executive Director and Tour Guide

I’m an interpreter of personal stories from the past and the city’s landscape. I love to imagine what originally happened inside old unmarked buildings, and what forces have shaped their design. I studied Chicago history, architectural history, and anything Chicago-related through my M.A. in the Humanities at the University of Chicago. My love for stories was enriched by my B.A. in Literature from the University of Michigan. I’ve written travel articles for publications like Rick Steves’ Italy best-selling travel guides, the San Francisco Bay Guardian, and The Chicago Food Encyclopedia. I live in the Chicago neighborhood of West Avondale.
“You can TELL Amanda is hyper-passionate about doing the research and getting the story that nobody’s heard before.”
Shelby F

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