Virginia Commonwealth University has officially broken ground this week on the Markel Center, the building that will house VCU’s Institute for Contemporary Art. Designed by Steven Holl Architects, the Institute is sited at a busy intersection at the edge of the Richmond campus, and will serve as a gateway between city and university. Inspired by the metaphysical idea of multiple timelines occurring simultaneously, the building will have four galleries which can host individual exhibitions at the same time, or link up to host a single, unified show.
An existing surface parking lot on the east side of VCU’s campus will be transformed into the 32,000 sqf arts institute. This will provide an opportunity to create a distinctive entrance into the campus from Broad and Belvidere streets. The program for the new gallery includes space for traveling exhibits and student exhibits, archival study area, offices, and an auditorium.