Cloud Gate: Biggest Bean of All!

Did you know that April 22 is National Jelly Bean Day? As you consider this, hopefully with a handful of jelly beans, did you know Chicago has the biggest "bean" in the world? Just don't try to eat it!

Cloud Gate, lovingly known to Chicagoans as "the Bean," is Anish Kapoor's iconic sculpture located in the heart of Millennium Park. Weighing in at 110 tons and measuring 66 feet long by 33 feet high, Cloud Gate has become as much a symbol of Chicago as the Willis Tower and Michael Jordan.

Inside the sculpture you won't find sweet-tasting candy. Instead, there are two giant rings joined together by trusses and lattice work. These temporarily held 168 plates of highly polished stainless steel together until they could be seam welded into place. The plates now form a single mirror-like "skin" designed to loosely fit around the interior support system. This allows Cloud Gate to expand and contract with Chicago's fluctuating temperatures and changing seasons.

To learn more, take a look at our Digital Collections, where you can see photographs of Millennium Park under construction, or check out one of these books.

Millennium Park Chicago

Better Than Perfect

Millennium Park