Museum of Modern Art Unveils $650m Expansion

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The Museum of Modern Art has unveiled its latest expansion, a $650 million project that will nearly double the size of the museum’s physical plant.

The expanded building, designed by Yoshio Taniguchi and his firm, takes up the entire eastern half of the Museum’s current site, at 11 West 53rd Street, between Fifth Avenue and the Avenue of the Americas. It is scheduled to open in 2015.

In addition to more than tripling the display area for works of art – to 235,000 square feet from 65,000 – the project will add two new public spaces. The first is a 16-story tower on Fifth Avenue that will house an auditorium and additional galleries. The second is a reconceived plaza along 53rd Street featuring a restaurant and shops.

The project also includes substantial improvements to public plazas on both sides of the existing museum building, which will remain open during construction.

The building will be clad in gray Indiana limestone and white terra-cotta tiles with aluminum spandrels. To avoid blocking views of Mies van der Rohe’s Seagram Building across 53rd Street, Mr. Taniguchi has set back its upper floors from the street line. The tower will have floor-to-ceiling

The Museum of Modern Art announced today that it has raised $650 million toward the construction of a new building designed by Yoshio Taniguchi, the institution’s chief architect since 1988.

The museum said that it had already acquired $421 million in pledges and gifts, and that it was seeking another $130 million to reach its goal. The museum’s chairman, Robert E. Mnuchin, said that more than 1,000 individuals and organizations had given money to the expansion project.

The 10-year capital campaign will end on Dec. 31, 2011. The new building, which is scheduled to open in 2015, will be roughly the same size as the existing one — 40 percent larger if you count only visible space — but will include a full floor devoted to temporary exhibitions and an additional space for artists’ installations.

Museum officials have said they hope to raise at least $200 million from art collectors who want their names attached to galleries at the museum. By comparison, the total cost of the Guggenheim Museum’s expansion was about $350 million; that project included space for offices and educational programs as well as gallery space.*

The Museum of Modern Art has unveiled a $650 million expansion designed by Yoshio Taniguchi, the architect behind the institution’s last big project—the 2004 renovation.

The new design will more than double the museum’s footprint, adding 25,000 square feet to the 53,000-square-foot building and temporarily closing off the Sculpture Garden (the facility will reopen it in 2014). The expansion will include a new entrance and lobby as well as an entirely new fourth floor, which will house a sculpture garden, among other things.

Taniguchi has been working on the project since 2005; he was selected after an international competition that brought in five finalists. His design is described as “an elegant stack of interlocking cubes, conceived as a series of galleries that open up to each other, providing multiple perspectives on artworks.” The addition will also provide more space for the museum’s collection of contemporary works and its programs in film, video and performance art.

The MOMA expansion breaks ground this summer and is expected to open in 2017.

The expansion, which has been in the works for some time, will create an additional 50,000 square feet of galleries, an enormous atrium and a new entrance pavilion.

“It really is a new museum,” said Glenn D. Lowry, the Modern’s director. “It’s as much about the experience of being here as it is about looking at works of art.”

The expanded space will be dedicated to modern and contemporary art and include galleries devoted to photography and design. The plan also calls for a 9,000-square-foot ground-floor gallery that will be used to show works from the museum’s permanent collection, which includes more than 150,000 objects ranging from ancient Egyptian masterpieces to Pop Art icons like Andy Warhol’s “Marilyn Diptych.”

“The idea is to make a kind of compact museum that would give people a sense of the range of our collection,” Mr. Lowry said.

An opening date for the new building has not yet been set. The project is being financed by $350 million in private donations along with $225 million from the city and state.

The expansion is part of a broader $600 million capital campaign that was announced in June by Thomas P. Campbell, who took over as director

After years of construction, the Museum of Modern Art’s (MoMA) $650 million addition and renovation is now complete. Its first exhibition, “The Artist’s Museum: From the Collection,” features works from artists whose lives and careers were central to MoMA’s founding in 1929.

Taschen Books will publish the book to accompany the exhibition, which opens on November 20th. It features selections from MoMA’s collection by 125 artists including Jasper Johns, Marcel Duchamp, Frida Kahlo, Andy Warhol, and Roy Lichtenstein. The book is edited by Ulrich Lehmann, Chief Curator at the Städel Museum in Frankfurt; it is designed by Pentagram partner Michael Bierut with associate designer Richard Hansen.*

Exhibition images are not available for use.

The museum’s first expansion since its founding in 1929 is the most ambitious in its history. It will more than double the museum’s size, to 265,000 square feet from 108,000. The new design by the Swiss architects Jacques Herzog and Pierre de Meuron will include a new entrance with a vast indoor space shaped like an upside-down pyramid.

“It is not just a building,” said Glenn D. Lowry, the museum’s director. “It is a project that will fundamentally change the way we experience art.”

The plans call for three galleries that would be among the world’s largest, including one designed for large-scale works like Jackson Pollock’s “Mural” (1943), which is nearly 15 feet tall and 50 feet long. There would be galleries for special exhibitions and for works from the permanent collection.

A second building would contain offices, education facilities and storage areas, as well as cafes on its ground floor facing West 53rd Street. That building would be linked to the main structure by an underground tunnel that would run beneath 53rd Street to allow easy access to all parts of the museum.

For the latest step in its transformation, MoMA has enlisted the architect Yoshio Taniguchi, who led the renovation of the Museum of Modern Art in Tokyo, and will be bringing to Manhattan a building and collection that he describes as “a museum without walls.”

Mr. Taniguchi’s design calls for a new six-story building to be built on what is now a vacant lot and for a new entrance pavilion to be added to the existing structure. The glass and steel extension will have walls of semitransparent stone panels and a curving ramp running through it, creating views from inside and out that echo Mr. Taniguchi’s other projects.

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