Rapt on The Mile

Photo 1 Rapt on The Mile Nick Cave Bob Faust Photo by James Prinz Photography

A multi-story building-wrapped mural, inviting Chicagoans and visitors from around the world to enjoy all that iconic Michigan Avenue has to offer. 

Created by Nick Cave and Bob Faust
On display at 679 N. Michigan Avenue
October 2021 - January 2022

The Magnificent Mile is thrilled to present the multi-story public art installation, Rapt on The Mile, created by renowned artists Nick Cave and Bob Faust. The vibrant mural, which wraps the 679 N. Michigan Avenue building (the former Apple Store), is presented by The Magnificent Mile Association with EXPO CHICAGO and key supporters from the City of Chicago, World Business Chicago, Choose Chicago, the Museum of Contemporary Art ChicagoNorthern Trust, The Peninsula Chicago, and Water Tower Realty.

Photo 2 Rapt on The Mile Nick Cave Bob Faust Photo by James Prinz Photography2
About the Project:
"The past year and a half have been incredibly challenging for everyone through COVID-19 isolation and losses, to uprisings and fear, and especially here on Michigan Avenue, which hosts the jobs of so many Chicagoans from a multitude of neighborhoods. There are so many things that need attention immediately, but they all require personal fuel to accomplish or even start. We created Rapt to share energy: energy from color, pattern, implied growth, and strength. We want the City of Chicago to view it and understand our interconnectedness and beautiful grit, and our support for each other as neighbors, believers, and doers.” - Nick Cave & Bob Faust

Installed by Creative Graphics Management, the vinyl piece spans more than three stories and wraps 6,000+ square-feet. The expansive building-wrapped mural utilizes iconic images and layered colors to create a three-dimensional garden, evocative of a fertile migratory hub, much like the way Cave sees the city.

The mural draws inspiration from the limited-edition print and poster, Head Dressed, created by Cave and Faust for the 2019 edition of EXPO CHICAGO. In collaboration with the Rapt reveal and celebration, the limited-edition print and poster is on sale now.

Cave lithograph

Proceeds from the sale of the original limited edition print go to the Facility Foundation – which provides scholarships and opportunities for emerging artists, fosters collaborations with like-minded established artists and partners with outside organizations and institutions to galvanize their outreach programming; The Magnificent Mile® Association – a private, non-profit membership organization with a mission of preserving, promoting and enhancing the City of Chicago’s North Michigan Avenue business district for the benefit of its members citizens and visitors; and EXPO CHICAGO’s Curatorial Initiatives — which seeks to promote the development of curators and foster the international dialogue between artists and institutions in Chicago and the greater Midwest.

Photo 3 Rapt on The Mile Nick Cave Bob Faust Photo by James Prinz Photography

About the Artists

Nick Cave is an internationally renowned Chicago-based artist celebrated for projects that blend community building with vibrant works of art across disciplines, including immersive installations, textural sculptures, impeccably crafted fashion, and dynamic videos and performances. Cave is well known for his Soundsuits, wearable sculptures that camouflage the body, creating a second skin that conceals race, gender, and class, and force the viewer to look without judgment. Created in partnership with artist Bob Faust, Rapt on The Mile is a building-sized expression. Cave and Faust have made the project a human-scaled through the explorative experience of hiding several Soundsuit images to be discovered upon closer inspection.

Bob Faust makes work to inform, empower, and/or instigate in the service and celebration of human difference, with typography at the core. Text, image, materiality, and the contextual choices made for each work are driven by concept. He is described as "part artist, part designer, and part mediator,” and is the principal and creative director for Faust, a Chicago-based art and design studio with a focus on cultural articulation. He is also the partner and design collaborator of artist Nick Cave. Together, the two recently opened a dynamic, multi-use creative space in Chicago called Facility. Faust also serves on the Cultural Advisory Council for the City of Chicago, as well as the Committee on Design for the City's Department of Planning and Development. Other positions he holds are on the Chicago Dancemakers Forum Board of Directors and the School of the Art Institute’s Fashion Council.


What are partners are saying about Rapt on The Mile: 

Photo 4 Rapt on The Mile Nick Cave Bob Faust Photo by James Prinz Photography2

“Rapt on The Mile is an impressive accomplishment from artists Nick Cave and Bob Faust, and we are excited to partner on this project as part of our ongoing Open Chicago initiative. Innovative installations like this one will help showcase the vibrancy of our downtown area, especially our Mag Mile, as we continue to make strong progress on our reopening and recovery efforts.”  - Chicago Mayor Lori E. Lightfoot

“Visitors to The Magnificent Mile will be delighted when they experience this imaginative and dynamic art installation. Cave’s and Faust’s work is deeply engrained in the cultural fabric of the City of Chicago, and the timing of the Rapt installation foreshadows their upcoming engagements at both the Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago and The Peninsula Chicago, key partners to the success and vibrancy of our multi-use neighborhood.” - Kimberly Bares, President and CEO of The Magnificent Mile Association 

“EXPO CHICAGO is extremely proud to be collaborating with this distinguished list of civic partners to realize this project. In anticipation of Nick Cave’s upcoming retrospective at the Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago in May of 2022, this vibrant collaborative artwork installation with Bob Faust serves as a visual beacon on Michigan Avenue for all to enjoy and heralds the ongoing efforts of The Magnificent Mile Association in service of its membership to present internationally renowned art." - Tony Karman, President and Director of EXPO CHICAGO

“We are thrilled to be working with Nick Cave, Bob Faust, and our longstanding partners at The Magnificent Mile Association and EXPO Chicago to bring this special project to life. We celebrate this opportunity to expose visitors from around the globe to the work of Nick Cave, whose visionary and dynamic artwork will bring new energy to Chicago’s iconic Michigan Avenue leading up to his career-spanning retrospective at the MCA in summer 2022. Rapt on The Mile is a shining example of our collaborators’ efforts to reconnect audiences with Chicago’s tremendous cultural offerings and inspirational artistic communities. We are grateful for Cave’s contributions and leadership within these communities throughout his career and are honored to present this work to Chicago audiences in full next summer.” - MCA Deputy Director Lisa Key

“We applaud The Magnificent Mile and EXPO CHICAGO for their vision in development and execution of Rapt on The Mile. Chicago is known for its architecture, art, and overall creativity; Rapt on The Mile adds to the allure of Chicago for visitors from near and far. Choose Chicago is honored to be able to be part of the team that made this installation possible.” - James Meyer, Interim CEO, Choose Chicago

“The Magnificent Mile is one of the most famous streets in the world. The historic Water Tower, one of the only buildings to survive the Great Chicago Fire 150 years ago, proudly sits on the avenue as a beacon of hope—reminding us that we are resilient, innovative, and forward-thinking. Today significant investments, all along the ‘Mag Mile,’ are being made to ensure it continues to be a world-class destination for incredible shopping, dining, architecture, tourism, and experiential offerings.”Michael Fassnacht, President & CEO, World Business Chicago, Chief Marketing Officer, City of Chicago


Rapt on The Mile photos by James Prinz Photography.




Companion Exhibits

Cave Soundsuit

The Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago presents Forothermore
Rapt on The Mile
also contributes to the long legacy of public artwork produced by Nick Cave, and its debut precedes the first career-spanning retrospective of the internationally renowned artist entitled – Forothermore (May 14 – October 2, 2022) at the Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago. Featuring dazzling installations, impeccably crafted fashions, and immersive videos, Nick Cave: Forothermore is a celebration of the way art, music, fashion, and performance can help envision a more just future. The exhibition traces artistic themes and Cave’s evolving interests over three decades, and features over a dozen works from Cave’s Soundsuit series in addition to the debut of his new series, Soundsuits 9:29. The exhibition is curated by former MCA Senior Curator Naomi Beckwith.

with all and still

The Peninsula Chicago presents with all, and still...
In addition to the Michigan Avenue installation, Faust’s exhibit, with all, and still…, is currently on display on the fifth floor Lobby Level at The Peninsula Chicago with a direct tie to Rapt, not just by adjacency, but also subject and style.

with all, and still … is a comment on the moment we are in, with special attention to the work we still need to do,” says Faust. “It is a series of billboard scaled canvases that bring beautiful details of many of Chicago neighborhoods onto The Mile and into The Peninsula’s lobby, to start conversations about what Chicago is and has to offer. It is a strong but humble contrast to the elegance of that space, that shows how unexpected juxtapositions enhance each other rather than being agencies to avoid,” he adds.


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