####By Greg Trotter; Chicago Tribune | May 7, 2015
A new attempt to raise awareness about ALS will try to do what many felt buckets of ice failed to do — teach people about the devastating effects of the disease.
Starting Thursday, spanning three days and locations, the Les Turner ALS Research and Patient Center at Northwestern Medicine will exhibit ice sculptures carved in the likeness of people who have suffered from ALS, the center said.
"The truth is there will never be another Ice Bucket Challenge," said Beth Richman, a public relations consultant for the foundation. "But here in Chicago, our plan is to unveil the ice sculptures. They give us more of a chance to talk about the disease."
The ice sculptures will represent 12 people with ALS, including some who have died, and will be accompanied by a plaque about the person's life, the release said. The sculptures will gradually melt, representing the wasting effect of the disease.
"This is hugely unique on so many levels," said Jim Nadeau, 61, the artist commissioned for the project, in an interview Wednesday.
For starters, Nadeau and his staff studied photos of the people represented and set about capturing their likenesses, carving each sculpture from 1,800 pounds of ice. The process took months.
Human figures are difficult to capture in ice, Nadeau said.
"These aren't hulks," he said. "They are everyday, normal people. It makes it difficult to get their likeness down."
It's also unknown how exactly the sculptures will fare as they melt outdoors, subject to the wind and sun, Nadeau said. Though Nadeau has undertaken a wide variety of projects in more than three decades of ice sculpting, he said this exhibit touched him on a personal level.
"It definitely tugged at my heart," the artist said. "I lost my wife to cancer last year. There's definitely a soft spot in my heart for these things that rip families apart."
On Thursday, one of the sculptures will be on display outside the Norris University Center at Northwestern University, a news release said. On Friday, four will be unveiled at Northwestern's downtown medical school campus. And on Tuesday, seven ice sculptures will be installed in downtown Chicago, exact location to be determined.
Initially, the third day of the exhibition was scheduled for Saturday, Richman said, but it was rescheduled for Tuesday because of weather.
A video crew will document the exhibition and the footage will be used in videos to raise awareness about ALS and the Northwestern research and patient center, the release said.
For more information, visit http://www.lesturnerals.org.