Archive for the ‘Museums’ Category

Renzo Piano’s latest work, going up under that great L.A. sky

01/26/2009

I went back, and this time the weather was more L.A. Here again you see the roof of the new pavilion of galleries designed by Renzo Piano Building Workshop going up in Los Angeles. For now the fins on top of the building- to capture, contain and shape the natural light, to bring it into the galleries below- look like a framework for photovoltaic solar panels, as you see over many parking lots in Southern California.

On the left is the lookout point of Piano’s earlier work at the L.A.County Museum of Art, the BCAM. In Paris when you ascend the escalator of Piano (and Roger’s) Pompidou Center the city unfolds, opens up, as you rise. In L.A. at LACMA, as you ride Piano’s escalator to the top, you are given a view of the sky.


And, seen through the construction fences:


More info on the Resnick Pavilion in the post just below. Scroll down or click here.
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More Renzo Piano at the L.A. County Museum of Art (LACMA). So how’s that going?

01/24/2009

After opening the Broad Contemporary Art Museum (BCAM) about a year ago (February 2008), the Los Angeles County Museum of Art (LACMA) is now on to Phase II of its transformation. Here’s a model of what we have to look forward to:


A one story, glass-filled, pavilion for galleries. (Official info on this building at the bottom.) You’ll see bountiful L.A. light coming in from the top, modulated by one of those finned grill systems that Renzo Piano Building Workshop does so well.

LACMA’s leader Michael Govan says that our favorite museums are one-story structures. Think about it. He may be right.

Just a few months ago the site for LACMA’s new Resnick Pavilion, as it’s to be called, was barren. Today I went to LACMA for a preview of “The Art of Two Germanys – Cold War Culture.” We were blessed with rain, fitting of a show that took me back to Berlin.

And, seizing the opportunity to find anything but blue skies here in L.A., I snapped these photos of the construction of LACMA’s Resnick Pavilion.


Here’s how close it is to BCAM


Seen from the balcony outlook of the red, escalator/staircase at BCAM

From LACMA’s website:

The Resnick Pavilion will be a single-story, glass and stone-enclosed structure sited north of the Broad Contemporary Art Museum (BCAM).

The new building… is intended to house special exhibitions, freeing up existing gallery space for LACMA’s robust permanent collection. Architecturally, the Resnick Pavilion will complement BCAM—both buildings feature glass roof and ceiling elements that will flood the galleries with natural light. The Resnick Pavilion’s exterior will be a combination of glass and travertine marble, and its interior galleries will be a flexible open plan that can accommodate multiple exhibitions at once as well as large-scale works of art. Construction on the new building commenced in 2008 and is slated for completion in mid 2010.

Model, northern aerial view, Lynda and Stewart Resnick Exhibition Pavilion, Renzo Piano Building Workshop, architects, photo © 2008 Museum Associates/LACMA.

For Renzo in Chicago, the current expansion of the Art Institute, click here.
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06/27/2007
For which major piece of public art,
in which American city,
are these destined?



Kudos to the US museum that commissioned a living American artist to grace the entrance to its new and expanded building.


Positioned like this they feel like the colonnade at St. Peter’s in Rome.
-E

10/15/2006

PS – I like that on the History Museums’s website,
they have a
Chicago History Minute.

Click here for it.

So for example, today you see that
“On October 15, 1922, more than 2,000 gathered to see Bessie Coleman, an African-American woman and pilot, give an exhibition in Chicago.”

Have you seen the road sign near O’Hare? Bessie Coleman Drive. Now you know the rest of the story. (smile)

-E

Update: And today I learned that “On October 16, 1891, the Chicago Symphony Orchestra performed its first concert at the Auditorium Theatre.

I wonder how that sounded?

10/15/2006

The new Chicago History Museum.

After some work by Hammond Beeby Rupert Ainge it’s looking more inviting. A curving wooden staircase (below) rather than a severe gridded box in the place makes the entrance more inviting.

One misstep, on the part of the installers is the placement of Norman Rockwell’s painting of man setting the clock on Marshall Field’s.

The good-to-look-at work is next to an elevator door, but even worse, it’s by that “Gas for Less” sign that flashes and changes colors.

So you really can’t see the painting, and it’s made to seem not very valuable anyway, hung on a column near an elevator. I’m not the biggest Norman Rockwell fan, but if you want to talk money “Clock Mender” is said to be worth $ 2-3 mil.

I know the History Museum got this painting after designing their new installations, and I think it was a surprise the work went to them. Remember, the Sun-Times reported that Marshall Field’s had the painting, and that Target, which once owned Field’s may have sent it to their headquarters in Minnesota. Last April, Federated, new owner of what was Field’s, demanded the return of the painting. And it did come back to Our Town, somewhat unexpectedly. Only a couple of months ago, Target offered it to the Chicago Historical Society/History Museum.

So they’ll find a better place to hang it, I’m sure.

I used to think

the worst installation of a painting in a Chicagoland Museum

was Grant Wood’s American Gothic, newly re-installed in the Art Institute. For such an iconic work it is unprotected, doesn’t have enough space around it, and is simply in the middle of a wide wall. it seems the Art Institute doesn’t understand what a great work it has. And, back to $moolah, if you make the painting seem a little more important, more tourists will flock to it for what they’ll consider a unique experience. I only say this because it is a truly great modern painting. Unlike the Rockwell which is but a fine illustration.

What do you think is the most poorly installed painting in Chicagoland?

One of the best is Anselm Kiefer in the entrance to the Smart Museum. Lit from above.

Here’s one more shot of how “Clock Mender” sits by an elevator shaft,


and that shot of the new Guggenheim-esque winding staircase in the new Chicago History Museum. It’s a good way to get you up to the second floor.

One more note – as this Sun-Times story tells us, the Chicago History Museum owns another Norman Rockwell painting – of Mrs. O’Leary and her cow. And that one isn’t even on view. Why not?

I’d like to see the two works together.

-Edwardo

10/15/2006

The new Chicago History Museum.

After some work by Hammond Beeby Rupert Ainge it’s looking more inviting. A curving wooden staircase (below) rather than a severe gridded box in the place makes the entrance more inviting.

One misstep, on the part of the installers is the placement of Norman Rockwell’s painting of man setting the clock on Marshall Field’s.

The good-to-look-at work is next to an elevator door, but even worse, it’s by that “Gas for Less” sign that flashes and changes colors.

So you really can’t see the painting, and it’s made to seem not very valuable anyway, hung on a column near an elevator. I’m not the biggest Norman Rockwell fan, but if you want to talk money “Clock Mender” is said to be worth $ 2-3 mil.

I know the History Museum got this painting after designing their new installations, and I think it was a surprise the work went to them. Remember, the Sun-Times reported that Marshall Field’s had the painting, and that Target, which once owned Field’s may have sent it to their headquarters in Minnesota. Last April, Federated, new owner of what was Field’s, demanded the return of the painting. And it did come back to Our Town, somewhat unexpectedly. Only a couple of months ago, Target offered it to the Chicago Historical Society/History Museum.

So they’ll find a better place to hang it, I’m sure.

I used to think

the worst installation of a painting in a Chicagoland Museum

was Grant Wood’s American Gothic, newly re-installed in the Art Institute. For such an iconic work it is unprotected, doesn’t have enough space around it, and is simply in the middle of a wide wall. it seems the Art Institute doesn’t understand what a great work it has. And, back to $moolah, if you make the painting seem a little more important, more tourists will flock to it for what they’ll consider a unique experience. I only say this because it is a truly great modern painting. Unlike the Rockwell which is but a fine illustration.

What do you think is the most poorly installed painting in Chicagoland?

One of the best is Anselm Kiefer in the entrance to the Smart Museum. Lit from above.

Here’s one more shot of how “Clock Mender” sits by an elevator shaft,


and that shot of the new Guggenheim-esque winding staircase in the new Chicago History Museum. It’s a good way to get you up to the second floor.

One more note – as this Sun-Times story tells us, the Chicago History Museum owns another Norman Rockwell painting – of Mrs. O’Leary and her cow. And that one isn’t even on view. Why not?

I’d like to see the two works together.

-Edwardo

10/13/2006

Apparently it’s a trend.
Billboarding the exhibition on the steps of the museum. See the signage for the Silk Road on the steps of the Art Institute? This doesn’t bother me. Because it doesn’t plug the sponsor, like this one does.

By the way, at a lecture at the Art Institute of Chicago tonight, the legendary photographer of modern architecture, Julius Shulman, now 95 years old, revealed an obsession with Erin Hogan – the Director of Public Affairs at the Art Institute. Hogan had been taking Shulman around the museum that day; she is many years, no, many decades, his junior. Yes, she is lovely. Julius Shulman spoke at length of her to a large audience gathered to hear him talk of his pictures and his life. He compared Ms. Hogan, and her chic clothing, to the beautiful architecture he loved to photograph. Live long enough, and I guess you can get away with that.

Shulman was admirably interviewed by the Art Institute Architecture and Design Curator Joseph Rosa, who has also published a fine catalog and biography on Shulman.

The Shulman exhibition, filled with the “California lifestyle” and light, and more beautiful people than you could fit in a swimming pool, runs through December 3rd.

-Edward