Thursday, January 17, 2008

Milwaukee Art Museum - Quadracci Pavilion

Milwaukee Art Museum - Quadracci Pavilion

700 N. Art Museum Drive
Wisconsin 53202

Santiago Calatrava 2001

Seen as a complete folly by some local Milwaukee residents, this is one of the most captivating contemporary buildings I ever visited. With the Quadracci Pavilion, the boundaries between engineering, sculpture and architecture have simply disappeared. If any Calatrava building deserves the description of �poetry in motion�, the Quadracci Pavilion is certainly it.

The Quadracci Pavilion is Calatrava�s first building in the US. Its objective was not simply to increase space for the Milwaukee Art Museum, but to create a new image for the museum, and by extension for the city of Milwaukee.

The Quadracci Pavilion is technically an extension of Eero Saarinen�s War Memorial on the lakefront of Michigan Lake in Milwaukee. But rather than add to Saarinen�s building, Calatrava proposed to add to the lakefront. It forms a link between the city of Milwaukee and Michigan Lake and extends Wisconsin Avenue almost into the lake. The Quadracci Pavilion complements Saarinen�s heavy � and rather grim � building both in form and in material. Where Saarinen�s building is landlocked, introvert, heavy and built in grayish stone, Calatrava�s extension is light and open and reaches out to the lake. The low and transparent connecting hallway almost denies that a relationship between these two buildings exists.

Kinetic Aesthetic + Minimalist + Clean = Fascinating Architecture.

When it opened!!

When it closed!

Open again~

Now it closed!

Interior with the outer louvers closed~

Interior with louvers opened like the bird spreading wings. capturing dayligthing into the interior.

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