Finding herself divorced and with an empty nest, Susann Craig decided she didn’t need an entire house to herself. She began posting cards on notice boards at a nearby college campus and soon found herself living with grad student renters, usually one at a time. One tenant from those years stood out, a young woman named Jeanne. Jeanne had recently completed a master’s in architecture at Harvard and was spending a few weeks in Chicago before leaving for Rotterdam to work as a lead designer for architect Rem Koolhaas.
Jeanne and Susann kept in touch, and after Jeanne returned to Chicago two years later, in 1995, she designed a loft to house Susann and her art collection.
The two have become close friends–so close, in fact, that Jeanne’s mother made a curtain from stainless steel threads as a privacy surround for Susann’s clawfoot tub, which perches near the glass-walled edge of the second floor.
You can read their story in Chapter 9 of A Home of Her Own. Jeanne, whose work is now internationally renowned, was recently awarded yet another impressive bit of recognition–a MacArthur Fellowship.