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The Brilliant Artist That Chicago, and the World, Nearly Forgot

The idiosyncratic art of Edgar Miller (1899-1993) has long been hidden behind closed doors. Finally, Chicagoans are getting more opportunities to see it.
Owls in stained glass at the Kogen-Miller Complex
Owls in stained glass at the Kogen-Miller Complex Alexander Vertikoff

Edgar Miller was a virtuoso in any medium he chose: painting, sculpture, stained glass, architecture, interior design, printmaking, metalwork, cutlery, graphic design. He put those prodigious skills toward building a creative community on Chicago’s near-north side in the 1920s and beyond. Miller’s handful of architecture projects (a series of live-work lofts) stretched the boundaries of the city’s bohemian frontier, seeding a new hub for culture, art, and radical politics.

This output never earned Miller a place in Chicago’s pantheon of culture. But now a non-profit, Edgar Miller Legacy, is celebrating his legacy and offering new ways for people to connect through Miller’s work.