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* This is the summer for architecture lovers in Chicago.

In addition to the American Institute of Architects/International Union of Architects World Congress on June 18 and 19, a number of venues in the city are sponsoring exhibitions that explore the breadth of the architectural challenges facing an ever more urban world.

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Chicago Architecture and Design, 1923-1993: Reconfiguration of an American Metropolis. More than 400 items, including architectural artwork, graphic design, and furnishings, explore the changes wrought on the physical landscape of the city by the great events of the century. At the Art Institute of Chicago (Michigan Avenue at Adams Street) through Aug. 29.

The Moscow Avant-Garde in Architecture: 1955-1991. The show includes drawings, models, and photographs of buildings by 10 Moscow architects. At the Art Institute of Chicago through Aug. 15.

Doors: The Opening and Closing of an Architectural Passage. Exhibition of 20th-century interior and exterior doors. At Salvage One (1524 S. Sangamon Street) through Aug. 31.

Design Diaspora: Black Architects and International Architecture 1970-1990. The exhibition includes photos, drawings, and models by more than 50 black architects working in Europe, Africa, and the Americas. At the Chicago Athenaeum (333 W. Wacker Drive) through Aug. 20.

The Chicago Tribune Architecture Competition for Public Housing. Drawings of suggested improvements for the Cabrini Green housing project from artists and designers. At the Chicago Athenaeum through tomorrow.

Culture in Action: New Public Art in Chicago. Eight projects were created by artists working in their neighborhoods to address community issues. These were commissioned over the last year by Sculpture Chicago, a decade-old, privately funded public-arts group. At sites throughout the city through Sept. 20. Call (312) 456-7140 for more information.

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