Press Releases

Announcing the Winners of the #SOMinChicago Instagram Contest

SOM is pleased to announce the winners of the #SOMinChicago Instagram contest: Nick Ulivieri, Laurie Shannon, and Ian Liu. A photographer, professor, and architect, respectively, all three winners are Chicago residents. SOM launched the public photo contest in September 2017 to celebrate architecture and design during the Chicago Architecture Biennial.

The jury awarded Nick Ulivieri (@nick_ulivieri) first place for his aerial shot of the John Hancock Center. A commercial and fine art photographer, Ulivieri has been shooting buildings and cityscapes since 2010. He is particularly interested in the interaction of nature with architecture; thunderstorms, low clouds, and fog are frequent subjects in his work. "We were treated to a gorgeous display of low-level clouds," he said, of the day he took the photo. "For a good portion of this helicopter flight, John Hancock was wrapped up tightly in clouds. But on one of our last passes, the clouds thinned just enough to make this iconic skyscraper stand apart from its neighbors."

Laurie Shannon (@saltsquare) won second place with her photo of the Hancock Center from a closer vantage point. A Shakespeare scholar and chair of the English Department at Northwestern University, Shannon lives near the Hancock Center and photographs it often, capturing it in various atmospheres. "That bold, tapering upstroke is pure drama; at the same time, it presides with perfect grace over its domain," she said. "It’s my favorite subject and the standout of our signature skyline in Chicago."

Ian Liu (@ianliu83) won third place for his photograph of the Willis Tower (formerly Sears Tower), framed by birds in flight. An architect at Goettsch Partners in Chicago, Liu captured the moment one early morning as he was watching the sunrise. "I got lucky with my camera and got a fast shot of the group of birds framing the Willis Tower," Liu said. In addition to architecture, Liu enjoys shooting landscapes, sunrises and sunsets, and thunderstorms.

The #SOMinChicago contest, launched with an open call to submit photos on Instagram of any SOM project in Chicago, ran from September 2017 through the duration of the Chicago Architecture Biennial, to January 2018. A jury of leading voices in architecture selected the winners from among more than 200 entries. The jurors were Eric Keune (@erkitekt), a Design Director in SOM's Chicago office; David Basulto (@dbasulto and @archdaily), architect and Founder and CEO of ArchDaily; Iker Gil (@ikergil), a Chicago-based architect and director of MAS Studio; and Lynn Osmond, President and CEO of the Chicago Architecture Foundation (@chiarchitecture).

See all submissions to #SOMinChicago here.