“I am attracted to the bold colors and palettes of nature,” says artist Elizabeth G Fagan. “I love to explore color synergies—different hues presented in ways that make the sum greater than the parts.” Fagan is always on the lookout for exciting palettes.
News about the former Johnson Publishing building in Chicago caught her eye. John Moutoussamy designed the 11-story building for Johnson Publishing, the nation’s most prominent publisher of magazines for African American audiences. Opened in 1972, the building on South Michigan Avenue has been renovated and reopened as an apartment complex. “Psychedelic 1970s designs and colors characterize the building,” says Fagan. “They are simply fabulous.”
Magazines like Jet and Ebony used a now-legendary, orange-and-green test kitchen in the building. After sitting vacant for more than 10 years, an Illinois landmark organization bought the intact kitchen. “Whether it ends up at DuSable, the Smithsonian, or the Chicago History Museum will be a collective decision down the line,” said a spokeswoman.
About the Author
Elizabeth G Fagan is an artist, photographer, and writer. A former Chicagoan, Fagan resides in southeastern Wisconsin. She calls her place in the world Lake Michigan’s Left Coast.
Fagan attended a private arts high school on Connecticut’s Long Island Sound, where she focused on print-making and photography. She went on to acquire a BA in English (Grinnell College & UIC), an MA in Linguistics (UIC), and a certificate in web development (DePaul University). A career in Chicago-area publishing and website design/development gave Fagan advanced professional skills. Following a move to Wisconsin, Fagan devotes much of her time to making art. She’s held part-time sales positions with paint, home-design, and photography retailers.
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