Introducing Make It Better’s 2019 Spring Issue: Art and Culture

Welcome to our spring issue. You may have noticed over the past couple years that we’ve used this issue to step away from annual themes like “Dining” and “Home” to dig a little deeper into something that’s been moving us lately. In 2017 it was “Water;” last year, “Sustainability;” this year, it’s “Art and Culture.”

Pablo Picasso said, “Art washes away from the soul the dust of everyday life.” Depending on where we’re at in life, the art forms — and artists — that help us achieve this are always changing. Before we had kids, my husband and I lived in London and spent many weekends exploring Europe’s great cities, viewing some of the most famous works of art on the planet. Now that we’re parents, I guess you could say our children are our favorite artists. Our 5-year-old is a prolific “master” of works in Crayola marker on computer paper and sculpture in Model Magic clay, while our 2-year-old is passionately into singing and performing his favorite musical numbers.

As we developed this issue, we took Picasso’s meditation on art as its definition too — art can be anything that strikes us with its beauty and brings us joy, helping us shed the weight of our burdens, or at least take a little break from them. Whether it’s the vibrant colors of this spring’s hottest fashions, the sea of rainbows in Chicago’s annual Pride celebrations, or a moving street mural that inspires reflection, “art” is everywhere (just check out our Ultimate Chicago Museum Guide for proof!), its impact undeniable. Learn how art is helping to bring solace and support to those touched by cancer, explore the colorful cultural marvels of the time-forgotten streets of Cuba, and see how some of Chicago’s top chefs turn inspired ingredients into edible works of art. And, of course, don’t miss any of the opportunities this spring and summer to get out and experience the myriad music, theater, festivals, and cultural events that come with warm weather in Chicago.


Brooke McDonaldEditor in Chief of Make It Better, Brooke Geiger McDonald is a Chicago native and Northwestern University grad who spent a decade away working for O, The Oprah Magazine and Shape magazine in NYC, and getting her master’s degree in English literature and working in book publishing in London. Back home in Chicago, she’s outnumbered by her husband and two sons, and the four of them are certifiable Disney and Star Wars fanatics. Other obsessions include Charles Dickens, wine and authentic Neapolitan pizza. Her favorite cause to support is Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America. Follow her on Instagram: @brookejmcdonald.