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Art Institute & Schureman & Hand Mantel Company
Life Span: 1873-1885
Location: Southwest corner of Michigan avenue and Van Buren
The Land Owner, April, 1874
THE ART INSTITUTE BUILDING AND THE SCHUREMAN & HAND MANTEL COMPANY.
The Art Institute Building, Michigan avenue, corner of Van Buren street, are presented in the present number of The Land Owner, was built and is owned by the Schureman & Hand Mantel Company, organized under the laws of the State, in the spring of 1872, with now a paid up capital of $60,000. The stockholders and and directors consist of Messrs. S. Hand, J. L. Schureman, S. B. Vowel, L. Vowel, W. Volk and W. H. DeCamp. The building was erected for the accommodation of the company’s business, and also contains art galleries, school rooms for art study, and art study, and artists’ studios, which latter interest is under the management of the Fine Art Institute and is a highly important and distinct feature of the building for the cultivation and gratification of art taste, of which it is not our purpose to speak in this notice, but reserve special mention until the proposed extension of the building on Van Buren street is completed, which will add another large art gallery, music rooms and studios, and the most complete art institution in all its requirements the city has ever possessed. It may be of interest to state that the Schureman & Hand Mantel Company is extensively engaged in the manufacture and importation of granite and marble monuments, statuary and mantel pieces of every quality and material in use, and every variety of approved and artistic forms. By a ramble through the warerooms and workshops, the visitor may see marbles direct from Carrara, Italy, and Rutland, Vermont, mingles together in the rough state and wrought into the most useful and beautiful forms, suited to the parlor, the building and the cemetery. The choice and magnificently colored marbles of the Appennines, Pyrennees, Germany and Belgium, are to be seen in the elegant mantels in their warerooms, and in the wainscoting, counters and stairway of the Palmer Hotel, which were manufactured and imported by this Company. There may also be seen the rose and gray colored granite monuments, from Aberdeen, Scotland, and from the granite quarries of the New England and Western States. The visitor from city and country will find no place in Chicago possessing so many attractions of interest as the Art Institute Building.
The Fine Art Institute, Showing Warerooms and Manufactory of the Schureman & Hand Mantel Company.
Chicago Tribune, February 16, 1873
The new building for the Fine Art Institute, on the corner of Van Buren street and Michigan avenue, is rapidly approaching completion. It is now confidently expected by the manager to be ready for opening to the public about the middle of next month. The exterior of the building is one of the most artistic in the city, and is well worthy of description. The style, which is unique in its way, may be characterized as Doric. The building is three stories in height. The ground floor will be occupied by the Schueman & Hand Marble Company, as their salesrooms, the other stories being rented by the Art Institute. The front commands a fine view of the lake, and will be finished in the Corinthian style. The projecting eaves of the roof being supported by pillars reaching to the ground, and at the back of these, extending from the roof to the top of the first floor, will be a large semi-circle of glass, covering the entire fascade, thus affording an uninterrupted view of the lake from the inside.
The interior arrangements of the building are being completed under the personal supervision of Mr. Aitken, and, when finished, will present one of the most perfectly appropriate homes for the fine arts in the country. Besides the gallery for the exhibition of pictures, there will also be withdrawing rooms for ladies, artists’ studios, an Art Library, and rooms especially designed for Art Schools. The gallery itself will, of course, be the main attraction. The room designed for for this purpose, is sixty by thirty-five feet, and twenty-five feet high, and will be decorated in the highest style of Pompeian art.
One of the most important and valuable features connected with this enterprise is the establishment of schools for art, which will be under the immediate supervision of one of our leading artists. The course for rudimentary instructions will be gratis, and the expenses of this branch will be defrayed by charging a small fee for the higher classes. The library will also be a very valuable assistance to the scholars, who will have free access to it, containing, as it will, the standard works both if Europe and this country upon all art subjects. Mr. Aitken has already secured the use of the very fine collection of casts imported by Leonard Volk from Italy.
The exhibition gallery will be open from 9 o’clock in the morning till 6 in the evening for the admission of members, pupils, and artists. The whole expense of this undertaking will be secured, as in the old Opera House Art Gallery, by annual subscriptions of $10 each, admitting subscribers and their families at all times to view the works of art exhibited. Private views will be given to subscribers whenever any important works of art are received, and the popular art receptions will be given semi-annually. Another new feature in this enterprise is the incorporation of a regular organized company who become life members of the institute on subscribing for one share of stock valued at $50. Among those who are already members will be found the names of some of our leading citizens, including M. K. Nixon, Ferd. W. Peck, J. V. Le Moyne, J. F. Lockwood, H. G. Spafford, and others.
Robinsons Map 1886
Volume 1, Plate 7