The River North Art District gains a new mascot: A "Rhino" grows in... RiNo

A solo show by artist Michael Whiting, known for his sculptures of large painted steel squares combined to create iconic "pixilated" forms of animals or figures, opens later this month at Plus Gallery. And if all goes well, the show will coincide with the unveiling of "Rhino," a self-explanatory, large-scale public sculpture set to occupy the triangle of land where Broadway, Larimer Street and 24th Street intersect, at the foot of the River North Art District. Plus gallerist Ivar Zeile, who helped coordinate the RiNo-specific public installation under the auspices of the Broadway Viaduct Lower Maintenance District, says most of the hurdles have been cleared.

The River North Art District gains a new mascot: A "Rhino" grows in... RiNo
"Rhino," in progress, Michael Whiting.

"It's very visible to everybody, and a great addition to the district that will act as a gateway piece for RiNo," Zeile says of Whiting's fabricated steel rhino. "Also, it's significant in that it fits the purpose so perfectly, from within his body of work as a whole. It's not like he was just creating something for a commission." Tough as a, well, a rhino's hide, this symbol will be welcoming folks to the industrial artists' district for years to come.

Whiting's show, Primitives, opens with a reception from 6 to 8 p.m. October 21 at Plus Gallery, 2501 Larimer Street, and continues through November 27; watch Show and Tell for an update on the "Rhino" installation.

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