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Experience a lecture, book signing and reception event featuring Chicago Tribune architecture critic and Pulitzer Prize-winner Blair Kamin, presented in partnership with the Harvard Club of Chicago.

$15 non-members
$9 CAF and Harvard Club of Chicago members
Lecture Hall @ CAF, 224 S. Michigan Ave.

Offering the complete, never-before-told story of the 25 gates that form portals to Harvard Yard, Blair Kamin's book recounts the aesthetic vision for America's preeminent university, developed by renowned architecture firm McKim, Mead & White. The book discusses the architectural intentions of the Harvard gates, as well as the human drama behind their fruition—tales of wealth, power and institutional and personal ambition.

Inside, there are previously unpublished sketches by architect and landscape architect Roger Erickson, stunning color photographs of each gate by Ralph Lieberman and a beautiful hand-drawn, three-dimensional aerial map of Harvard Yard that denotes the location of each gate, designed by Rhode Island School of Design graduate student Christopher Beck.

Blair Kamin

Author: Pulitzer Prize-winner Blair Kamin has been the Chicago Tribune’s architecture critic since 1992. A graduate of Amherst College and the Yale School of Architecture, he holds honorary degrees from Monmouth University and North Central College, where he serves as an adjunct professor of art. Kamin has lectured widely and has discussed architecture on programs ranging from ABC's "Nightline" to WTTW's "Chicago Tonight." The University of Chicago Press has published two collections of his columns: "Why Architecture Matters: Lessons from Chicago" and "Terror and Wonder: Architecture in a Tumultuous Age." His new book, “Gates of Harvard Yard,” was sparked by a Harvard Wintersession course he co-taught during a 2012-13 Nieman Fellowship at the university. Kamin took particular pleasure from the fact that Harvard’s main gate is named for a Chicagoan, Samuel Johnston of the Class of 1855.

Twitter: @BlairKamin

  • There will be a book signing preceding the event at 5:30pm and also following the evening’s lecture. The official program starts at 6:00pm.
  • Discounted student tickets are available for $6. Please reserve your student tickets by contacting the CAF Call Center at 312.922.TOUR (8687).
  • Harvard Club of Chicago members: To purchase your tickets at the member price, please contact the CAF Call Center at 312.922.TOUR (8687).
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