Check Out The Latest SFMOMA Renderings!
February 14, 2013
Aerial view from Howard Street.
The expanded San Francisco Museum of Modern Art won’t open till 2016, but we’ve been waiting only sort of patiently since 2011. SFMOMA has been parceling out details here and there, and today they’ve thrown us a few more pieces of CAD bait to feed on. It’s hard to puzzle together the total logic of the new components—from the pearlescent double-wide of a tower to the rejiggered connections between the museum and its side streets—so we’ll have to resist the temptation to speculate. For now. Go ahead, click through for the renderings!
A quick refresher: This is a rendering of the expansion from Yerba Buena, released in 2011.
Snøhetta is expanding on Mario Botta’s 1995 building with a 10-story concrete tower tucked behind the original museum. Connections between the existing galleries and the new space will add to the museum’s exhibition capacity by about 130,000 square feet. With new terraces, indoor/outdoor galleries, and expanded admissions-free zones, the design is all about opening up the museum to the street and inviting pedestrians into new, art-filled public spaces.
A large glass-walled gallery along Howard Street will replace the old lobby’s admissions functions with a free public space showcasing large works of art.
The existing lobby and ticketing area will become a glass-fronted 25-foot-tall free gallery for large artworks, such as Richard Serra’s gigantic spiral sculpture Sequence—allowing public-scale art to actually be experienced by the whole public. “[T]he programmatic and architectural steps we are taking will allow us to be a truly living space, providing the best art experiences possible to all of our visitors,” SFMOMA director Neal Benezra said in a statement. One casualty of all the new public circulation is Botta’s distinctive granite-striped staircase, which will lose out to a wider stair designed to draw visitors up from the atrium to a new plaza in the rear. We can’t be sure till we see the finished building—er, further renderings!—but so far Snøhetta’s design is stacking up to be a people-centric, rather than architect-centric, space.
A new sculpture terrace extending from Howard to Minna Street will feature a vertical garden of native plants.
This double-height “white box” flexible space on the fourth floor will jazz up the museum’s performance capabilities with a state-of-the-art lighting grid and sound system.
The new Art Court.
The Howard Street entrance.
The southeast facade of the expansion.
All images courtesy of MIR and Snøhetta