The NHL Stanley Cup Final games are underway and if you didn’t already know the two remaining teams are ‘Original Six’ members Boston Bruins and Chicago Blackhawks. Today the lions outside the Art Institute of Chicago were adorned with giant Blackhawks helmets, something that is done each time a Chicago ‘Big Four’ sports team competes in a major final.
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{Photos via Facebook}

On the Facebook page of the Art Institute, the famous painting American Gothic by Grant Wood has been given a similar make over (don’t fret, it’s Photoshop), although they were perhaps missing a trick by not using another of their American classics – Edward Hopper’s Nighthawks.

The Photoshopping is just a bit of fun but some of the comments on Facebook show that several people are unhappy about the ‘defacing’ of such a famous American work. The Art Institute has also been criticised for spending money on something as ‘frivolous’ as huge ice hockey helmets. Others embrace the idea, suggesting it could increase visitor interest in the museum and that the mix of sport and art is a good thing.

Whoever’s side you’re on, Chicago natives are clearly very proud of their sports teams as well as their museums. The combination of the two has evidently upset some people, whilst others love the idea. What do you think? Do sport and art mix? Does an art lover’s interest in (violent) sports decrease their cultural capital?

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