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Peter Zumthor
Los Angeles County Museum of Art (LACMA), Los Angeles, California
Recommendation by Bill Lasarow


Peter Zumthor, installation view of model for ''The Presence of the Past: Peter Zumthor Reconsiders LACMA,'' 2013.

 

Continuing through September 15, 2013

 

After decades of expansion around its original suite of buildings those stately but increasingly, to our now older eyes, drab structures may finally be replaced altogether. The Swiss architect and former Pritzker Prize winner (2009) Peter Zumthor's design has progressed far enough for this trial balloon of an exhibition to allow the public to visualize what this might look like, in this case something of a jigsaw puzzle piece plopped down to flow in and around the neighboring museum buildings and tar pits. Perhaps it might even be mistaken for one of the tar pits from the air. 

 

The black as night two-story tall amoeba would sport floor to ceiling glass facades that would invite visitors on the top floor to look outward at the surrounding landscape before entering the enclosures in which the collections and exhibitions would be housed, if not in a manner of speaking hidden. On the bottom floor the idea is to make the glass function like display windows, inviting us to remain outside to view selections any time of the day or night. The effect of this arrangement seems a problematic competition for the direction in which the public's attention would be directed, and the window shopping metaphor is downright unsettling. Thank goodness it would include one of the largest urban solar farms in the known universe.

 

Published courtesy of ArtSceneCal ©2013 

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