This guide is designed to help you navigate the museum. There are four floors in the building, and an ever-changing array of contemporary artwork. You don't have to see it all. Here, we present four stories about four objects, one for each floor (story) of the museum. You'll find information about the art and artists as well as videos, photos, and maps. We hope you enjoy your journey.

Art is being made all over the world, including here in Chicago. These four artworks tell stories of the many places where artists make work and the many places their works depict.

Original photography for the <i>Earthling</i> album cover, 1997. Union Jack coat design: Alexander McQueen in collaboration with David Bowie. Photo: Frank W Ockenfels 3. © Frank W Ockenfels 3

Original photography for the Earthling album cover, 1997
Union Jack coat design: Alexander McQueen in collaboration with David Bowie
Photo: Frank W Ockenfels 3
© Frank W Ockenfels 3

What is the Union Jack?
Want to know more about the artist?

David Bowie had two key influences in designing this coat with Alexander McQueen:

Pete Townshend of The Who
Union Jack coat worn by Pete Townshend of The Who
Gavin Turk's painting
British artist Gavin Turk’s 1995 painting Indoor Flag

• Mimic David Bowie’s stance. What might you be thinking or doing when you stand like this?

• Where are some places you see representations of the American flag—clothing, consumer products, food?

4th Floor Exhibition
Sep 23, 2014–Jan 4, 2015

Exhibition Page

Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago 4th floor map
Sarah Belknap and Joseph Belknap. <i>Deflated Exoskin (1)</i> (left) and <i>Deflated Moon Skin (1)</i> (right), 2014. Silicone. Courtesy of the artists

Sarah Belknap and Joseph Belknap
Deflated Exoskin (1) (left) and Deflated Moon Skin (1) (right), 2014
Courtesy of the artists

What are these objects?
Who are the artists?
How are these objects made?
Jupiter moons illustration 67 moons of Jupiter

• Jupiter has 67 moons, the most of any planet in the solar system.

• The four largest moons of Jupiter were discovered in 1610 by Galileo Galilei.

• Jupiter’s largest moon, Ganymede, is bigger than the planet Mercury.

• Many of the moons are named after descendants and companions of the god Jupiter.

• Think about the types of molds you may already own—jello molds, muffin tins, angel food cake or bundt pans—and experiment with using them in new ways.

• Mix Play-Doh or Model Magic ® with other substances to create textured objects—planets, moons, or other creations.

• The Earth’s moon does not have a name. Why do you think that is? What would you name it?

3rd Floor Exhibition
Oct 11, 2014–Feb 24, 2015

Exhibition Page

Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago 3rd floor map
Simon Starling: Metamorphology

Installation view, Simon Starling: Metamorphology, MCA Chicago
Jun 7–Nov 2, 2014
Photo: Nathan Keay, © MCA Chicago

Want to hear about Flaga's journey?
Where has Flaga traveled?
How did Flaga get on the wall?
Fiat 126
Fiat 126

• The Fiat 126 was introduced in 1972 at the Turin Auto Show. Until 2000, some were produced in Poland and were known as Polski Fiat 126p. Over 6.5 million were produced.

• Starling read about this outsourcing in an in-flight magazine and was curious about how a car of Italian origin became a family car in Poland. That inspired the work.

• Maluch, which means “little” in Polish, was accepted as the official name of the car in 1997.

• Simon Starling talks about the idea of time travel in his work. If you had access to a time machine, which would you choose:

• Are you into cars? Check out other examples of cars used in contemporary art:

2nd Floor Exhibition
Jun 7–Nov 2, 2014

Exhibition Page

Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago 2nd floor map
MCA Chicago Plaza Project: Yinka Shonibare, MBE

Installation view, MCA Chicago Plaza Project: Yinka Shonibare, MBE
Jun 16–Oct 2014
Photo: Nathan Keay, © MCA Chicago

Where is the artist from?
Where do these objects come from?
Want to see behind the scenes?
Grand Cross's star of the Order of the British Empire
Grand Cross's star of the Order of the British Empire

Yinka Shonibare has the title of MBE attached to his name. MBE stands for Member of the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire. (Maybe you’ve seen the title of "Sir," which is given to the two highest ranks of five that are granted by the Queen.) This title was bestowed upon Shonibare in 2004.

• Dig around in your pocket, backpack, or purse and pull out an item at random. Is there a label on it that tells you where it was manufactured? Where did it come from? How do you think it was made? How did it find its way to you?

• Ask the next person you see if they have lived in one place all their life or if they have moved around. If someone asked you where you were from, what would you tell them: the name of a neighborhood, a city, a state, a country?

• Learn more about the artist: 

• Simon Starling is also interested in where things come from and where they go. Check out the story above to learn more about his work.

Plaza Exhibition
Jun 16–Oct 2014

Exhibition Page

Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago 1st floor map