CHICAGO—The Kinzie Hotel has unveiled a unique new Chicago-centric art installation designed by a prominent local artist in conjunction with its support of the K9s for Cops Public Art Campaign. The high-profile initiative, which supports the Chicago Police Memorial Foundation, serves to memorialize Chicago’s heroic fallen officers by way of the 54-inch German Shepherd Statue that represents the canine partners who have assisted police officers for generations. From now through Labor Day, the weather-proof fiberglass statue is standing guard in the heart of Chicago’s Magnificent Mile. A portion of the proceeds from the sponsorship benefits PAWS Chicago’s work to provide residents in underserved communities with free spay/neuter services and medical care for their pets.
Kinzie Hotel commissioned Chicago artist Jennifer Greenburg for the creation of its K9 art piece, which is prominently exhibited in front of The Gap at 555 N. Michigan Avenue before permanently being placed in Kinzie’s lobby. In staying true to the hotel’s Chicago Starts Here mantra, Greenburg took the artistic approach of paying homage to Chicago’s rich architecture history, which has always been a source of pride and uplifting inspiration to its residents.
“We selected Jennifer Greenburg to design our statue because her concept makes a strong connection to Chicago’s storied history,” said Kinzie Hotel Director of Sales & Marketing Jill Farley. “Like John Kinzie, the Chicago pioneer for whom our hotel is named after, our great city has an enduring nature that should be embraced.”
“Chicago’s beauty reminds us that dreams are possible,” added Greenburg. “The K-9 memorial statue I created for the Kinzie Hotel depicts the glittering Chicago skyline at night in tribute to those who have given their lives to keep Chicago safe.” Using a photograph of the Chicago skyline taken in 1930, Greenburg references another time period when Chicago was experiencing great financial and cultural uncertainty. She draws parallels between that era and now to show the cyclical nature of history and to illustrate the enduring quality of the city and those who protect it. The K-9 statue is made using a vinyl inkjet process typically used in the automotive industry. The fabrication method enabled the artist to work with found vernacular photographs, digital imagining, and technology.