After being closed for a two-year restoration, the New York Public Library’s historic Rose Main Reading Room and Bill Blass Public Catalog Room will reopen to the public ahead of schedule on Wednesday, October 5th at 10am.
The $12 million project, managed by Tishman Construction Corporation, came about in May 2014 when an ornamental plaster rosette fell 52 feet from the Reading Room’s ceiling. In addition to recreating and replacing this piece, all 900 rosettes in both rooms were reinforced with steel cables. Other work included the recreation of a 27′ x 33′ James Wall Finn mural on the ceiling of the Catalog Room and the restoration of the chandeliers. To mark the occasion, the NYPL has shared an incredible collection of photographs documenting the restoration work and the Rose Main Reading Room with nearly all scaffolding removed.
It’s rare for an architect to have the opportunity to design a building in which symbolism and form are as important as function, if not more so. But this was the task given to David Adjaye when he won the commission to design the National Museum of African American History and Culture (NMAAHC), which, when it opens in September, will be the final Smithsonian institution to take its place on the National Mall in Washington, D.C. Adjaye, whose work is marked for its extreme sensitivity to context, found himself challenged in ways he had never been before. On the occasion of the completion of Adjaye’s Eugene McDermott Award residency at MIT, Metropolis editor Vanessa Quirk spoke with the architect about the new institution, its symbolic significance, and the blurry boundary between monument and museum.
Earlier this summer, the Vitra Schaudepot on the Vitra Campus was officially opened. The latest in a string of structures designed by emerging and well-known architects, this gallery space is the second building by Swiss-practice Herzog & de Meuron. Conceived as "a visible storage facility" presenting a cross-section of the Vitra Design Museum's extensive collection of furniture and lighting, over 400 objects will provide "a comprehensive introduction to the history of furniture design." Featuring a café, shop and a new entrance for visitors to the museum, the building is also able to host temporary exhibitions. Photographer Laurian Ghinitoiu has turned his lens to this latest addition in Weil am Rhein.
nArchitects’Library as Home has won first place in the 2016 International Young Architects Design Competition for the 110,000 square meter Shanghai Library East Hall in China. Hosted by the Shanghai Pudong New Area People’s Government, the competition sought out designs that enhance Shanghai’s distinct cultural influence and promote community life.
Library as Home reflects these goals in its design as “a large house for all, with a rich variety of environments that Shanghai’s citizens could appropriate as their own.”
NARTARCHITECTS has released the plans for its Csontváry Museum in Pécs, Hungary, which will feature the work of Tivadar Csontváry Kosztka, a Hungarian painter known for his technical skill and spiritual messages.
The design of the Museum reflects Csontváry’s symbolic and interpretive work. Rather than utilizing the typical “plaza-museum” typology, the Csontváry Museum will be located on the outskirts of the city in a crater of a former coal mine near a lake. Through this location, the space gives a dramatic ambiance suited to its program.
An MVRDV-designed library in Tianjin has topped out as part of the city’s Binhai Cultural Centre. The 34,200 square meter (370,000 square foot) building will join four other cultural institutions designed by Bernard Tschumi Architects, Bing Thom Architects, HH Design, and GMP – creating “cultural corridors” – that are part of a GMP-designed masterplan. The library program includes educational facilities, service spaces, book storage, archives, computer rooms, audio rooms, an auditorium, lounge areas, meeting rooms, offices, general reading areas, and those designed specifically for children and the elderly. Tianjin Binhai Library has been designed by MVRDV in collaboration with the TIanjin Urban Planning and Design Institute (TUPDI).
Schmidt Hammer Lassen Architects has been awarded first prize in the competition to design the Student Center and Library for the Wenzhou-Kean University in Wenzhou, China. Set on 500 acres of land in a rural mountainous region, the 25,000 square meter project will provide learning and living space for 8,500 students.
Wenzhou-Kean University is cooperatively run by Wenzhou University, in China, and Kean University, in New Jersey, USA, and aims to merge Chinese and American teaching methodologies. Thus, the new Student Center and Library is focused on embracing diversity, interaction, and the sharing of knowledge.
A new museum dedicated to rock, pop and youth culture will open today in the Danish city of Roskilde. Designed collaboratively by Dutch-based practice MVRDV and Copenhagen-based COBERagnarock, as it is to be known, has been described by its designers as "oozing rock’n’roll attitude, with its golden exterior and velvety red interior." The museum is part of ROCKmagneten, a masterplan for the site of a former concrete factory which COBE and MVRDVwon together in 2011. The area has since been designated as a creative and cultural neighborhood and the museum, which is now at the heart of this transformation, is set to be open to the public all year round.
The Western Australia Government has commissioned OMA and Hassell to design the new WA Museum in Perth. The team was chosen over three shortlisted consortia for the reputation of "creating dynamic architecture" and "international reputation," according to WA Culture and the Arts Minister John Day. A schematic design is expected to be released this summer. The museum plans to open by 2020.
The EDP Foundation has announced that MAAT, the Museum of Art, Architecture, and Technology in Lisbon, will open to the public on October 4-5. The museum, with a new kunsthall building designed by AL_A, will “become the centerpiece of one of the Portuguese capital’s most popular cultural areas, the historic riverside district of Belém."
As part of its 50th anniversary celebrations, the Asian Art Museum of San Francisco has announced major renovation and expansion plans by wHY Architecture. The practice is expected to design a new 12,000-square-foot exhibition pavilion, reconfigure the Museum’s existing galleries, and modernize its education and public programming spaces. Work will begin in 2017.
"The new pavilion will underscore San Francisco’s cultural diversity, create one of the nation’s premier exhibition spaces dedicated to Asian art, and increase the number of special exhibitions on view for visitors," says the Museum.
Five major firms have been shortlisted for the Albright-Knox Art Gallery's $80 million expansion in Buffalo, New York. Chosen for their "design intellect" and ability to collaborate, the competing firms will envision ways to expand the gallery's exhibition space and create a new public urban area that maximizes the site's potential, as the Albright-Knox campus is located on the edge of Delaware Park - one of Frederick Law Olmsted’s major works.
“The selection of the architects reflects that malleability, because none of them has a fingerprint style,” Albright-Knox director Janne Sirén said. “All of them, almost, specialize in an ability to build for a given context.”
Mecanoo architecten and MAYU architects+ have won a competition to design the new Tainan Public Library in Taiwan. Their winning design "represents the meeting of cultures, generations and histories," says the architects. It will feature an inverted stepped facade that houses reading rooms, special collections, study spaces, a children’s area, café, conference hall, a 200-seat auditorium, and public courtyards.
The Museum of London and Malcolm Reading Consultants have launched an international search for an outstanding architect or team of architects to create a new building for the museum at West Smithfield in the City of London. The project at the heart of the two-stage design competition has a £130-150m construction budget, and is focused on regenerating a nationally-significant landmark and creating new contemporary galleries within a group of historic buildings on the West Smithfield site. The Museum of London is one of the top ten museums and galleries in the UK capital and responsible for the world’s largest archaeological archive, which currently holds six million artefacts.
"For the first time since the foundation of the Museum of Ethnography that is, for over 140 years now, it has become possible to permanently place the museum in a building worthy for the collection, to be built specifically for this function. In addition, the construction of the new building of the Museum of Ethnography will solve another more than half a century problem: by relocating the institution, the Kúria (former Ministry of Justice) building, recently housing the museum, can regain its original function," says Liget Budapest.