The Chicago Paratours

As part of the Manifest Paratours program, Manifest organized, in conjunction with the Chicago Architecture biennial, three special tours on Friday, Oct. 2nd, 10:30. RSVP on

Enrique Ramirez

Meet up spot: Ultramoderne’s Chicago Horizon, across the street from Shedd Aquarium, 1200 S Lake Shore Dr

Chicago’s architecture interfaces with the air, outer space, and the universe beyond. Starting with this premise, this ParaTour will convene at Ultramoderne’s Chicago Horizon kiosk, the wing-like Lakefront Kiosk near the Shedd Aquarium. From there, the tour will visit the various plaques, statues, and sculptures surrounding the Adler Planetarium, and then moves on towards Northerly Island, a peninsula that was part of Daniel Burnham’s 1909 Plan of Chicago, as well as the Sky-Ride that enabled aerial views of the 1933 Century of Progress Exposition. Northerly Island was the site of the next point of interest—the tower and terminal belonging to Meigs Field, a small single-strip airport that was one the busiest private airports in the world before it was razed in 2003. Near here, we have the launching point for one of the most fantastically cosmic aerial views in architectural history: the heroic, otherworldly zooming out from Charles and Ray Eames’ Powers of Ten (1977). And for those die-hard nerds, coming to age in a pre-OSX, pre-Windows world, one where MS-DOS shells, Commodore-64’s, TRS-80’s, and Compaq Portables ruled the roost, Meigs Field was the point of origin for the first version of Microsoft Flight Simulator (1981). Flying out of Meigs, with your CRT screen as a windscreen, over which you glimpse a heavily pixelated network of line segments and solids that are “just” close enough to represent the Willis Sears Tower and John Hancock Center, you become one of the first explorers of a “virtual” Chicago. This history of the past, present, and future of Northerly Island and its surroundings may force a question, namely: will you take advantage of the opportunity, traverse the space and skies above the city, or will you just be okay looking at it through a screen or reading it on a page? In other words, and to invoke another aerial precedent—Tony Scott’s Top Gun (1986)—come to Northerly Island and find out whether you are a Maverick, forward-looking, adventurous, or an Iceman, casting this opportunity aside to the fleeting air, to be carried off on the slipstream? Folks, to use the language of physics, it is a question of action versus reaction, of aerodynamic lift versus induced drag, an architectural drama made manifest by dint of the various representations of Northerly Island on films and computer screens.

GRNASFCK (Colleen Tuite and Ian Quate)
, Future Not Found

Meet up spot: Chicago Board of Trade

"It's seductive to imagine that a force bigger than capitalism will finally sweep it away.  But what if this thought were coming to us from within capitalism itself? What if capitalism itself relied on fantasies of apocalypse in order to keep reproducing and reinventing itself?  What if, finally,  Nature as such, the idea of a radical outside to the social system,  was a capitalist fantasy,  even precisely the capitalist fantasy?" Timothy Morton, The Ecological Thought

The Chicago Board of Trade is one of the world's oldest and largest futures and options exchange. "Futures" markets actively wager on crop performance, natural resource extraction, and climate events compared to a background of previous seasons. With increasing climate disruption more energy has entered into the market (in the form of atmospheric carbon) creating an economic engine now entirety automated, amplifying the toposphere with weather patterns projected onto a global economy.
In 2015 the Chicago Board of Trade announced they would be leaving The Earth and entering The Cloud; completing the transition from physical, open outcry floor trading to a purely electronic system.

Now, decades later, post-XXXX, when trading is algorithmic and currency digital, we return to the petrified temple of meteorological capitalism, as anthropologists looking for clues indicating why this artisan trading system evaporated what it means for the now-present future.

Andrew Kovacs
: The Leaning Tower

Meet up spot: The Leaning Tower in Niles, Illinois

In an effort to appreciate the prescient quality that it’s falling down is simultaneously and asset and liability, we will circumambulate about the Leaning Tower of Niles, Illinois.