Kimbell Art Museum To Unveil Renzo Piano Addition In November
FORT WORTH, Texas, May 6, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- Renzo Piano's highly anticipated expansion of Louis I. Kahn's Kimbell Art Museum will open to the public on Wednesday, November 27, 2013. The Renzo Piano Building Workshop (RPBW) of Genoa/Paris/New York collaborated with Kendall/Heaton Associates of Houston on the new building.
An expression of simplicity—glass, concrete and wood—Piano's light, colonnaded, post-and-beam pavilion stands some 65 yards to the west of Kahn's solid, vaulted museum, graciously acknowledging the 1972 landmark by mirroring its three bays, colonnades, elevation, emphasis on natural light, and use of concrete as a primary material.
Atop the front structure of the two-part building, thin layers of glass and steel louvers seem to hover above enormous wooden beams, which in turn appear to float above long expanses of concrete and glass walls. This effect of weightlessness is all the more striking in counterpoint to the pavilion's low-slung proportions and overhanging eaves.
The Kimbell is renowned for a permanent collection of masterpieces ranging from ancient to modern times. While it is expected that its collection of European art will continue to occupy the Kahn building, special exhibitions and works from the museum's superb Precolumbian, African and Asian collections will be showcased in two large, elegant galleries in the front structure of the Piano pavilion. Light-sensitive works will be displayed in a specially designed gallery in the rear portion of the building, which is tucked under a green roof.
"An awesome challenge" is how Piano has described the effort to complement Kahn's masterpiece. Kimbell leadership believed that if any architect were up to the task, it was Renzo Piano, who worked for a time in Kahn's office as a young man and had already designed three great museum buildings in Texas: the Menil Collection and Cy Twombly Gallery in Houston and the Nasher Sculpture Center in Dallas.
Piano's best-known early museum project is the Centre Georges Pompidou in Paris, which he designed with Richard Rogers. Elsewhere in Europe, he is also celebrated for the Beyeler Museum in Basel and the Klee Museum in Bern. Last summer, the Renzo Piano Building Workshop received acclaim for The Shard in London—Europe's tallest building.
More information may be found at www.kimbellart.org.
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SOURCE Kimbell Art Museum
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