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Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum

1071 Fifth Avenue & 89th Street
New York City NY United States

Construction Dates
Floor Count16
Building Uses
 - museum
 - monument
Structural Types
 - highrise
 - lowrise
Architectural Style
 - streamline moderne
 - structural expressionism
 - futurism
 - glass
 - steel
 - stucco
 - concrete (plain)
 - concrete, reinforced

 Heights ValueSource / Comments 
Roof184 ftOfficial Website
Highrise Annex (1992)
Lower roof131 ftOfficial Website
Frank L. Wright Museum (1959)

- Architect: Frank Lloyd Wright

- First called "The Museum of Non-Objective Painting," it was founded to showcase avant-garde art by early modernists such as Rudolf Bauer, Hilla Rebay, Wassily Kandinsky and Piet Mondriaan.

- The building instantly polarized architecture critics, though today it is spreadly revered. It looks alike a white ribbon curled cylindrical stack, slightly wider at the top than the bottom, in constrast to more typical boxy Neighborhood buildings around it, to make this museum comparing to Metropolitan Museum of Art "look like a Protestant barn."

- In Interior the viewing gallery forms a gentle spiral, with paintings displayed along the walls, from the ground level up to the top of the building, as well in viewing rooms at stages along the way.

- The skylight in the center of the museum were focus to critics about it overshadows the artworks displayed, and the curved wall does not allow to hang the artwork properly by narrow corridors surrounding the central spiral without windows, although the light from top is generous, some artificial light is needed, even the fact the concave walls make harder showing the art objects. Before opening, 21 artists, including Willem de Kooning and Robert Motherwell, signed a letter protesting the display of their work in such a space.

- In 1966 an U.S. postage stamp appeared about Frank Lloyd Wright with the museum as background in his honor.

- In 1992, another supplementary building designed by Gwathmey Siegel and Associates Architects was constructed in forms of a boxy one totally in contradition to the original spiral the first architect, who was not his intention, because of contradition in Neighborhood.

- In October 2005 became director of museum in NY city Lisa Dennison.

- Thomas Krens remains director of the Solomon R. Guggenheim Foundation, having recently won a decisive victory over billionaire philanthropist and board member Peter B. Lewis, significant contributor to the foundation, resigned in 2005 in a dispute with the board over the direction and leadership of the foundation. Krens and Lewis continue to agree in describing the building itself as "the most important piece of art in the collection", which also supported with $29 million the last restoration together the City and State of New York.

- The exterior and its infrastructure were restored from 2007 until spring 2008, requiring only limited structural interventions. Experts in the field of landmark restoration and preservation formulated a methodology using the latest techniques and materials unavailable to Frank Lloyd Wright in the 1950ies. A team of restoration architects and conservators as well engineers worked giving its current condition, including the removal of 11 coats of paint from the original surface, revealing hundreds of cracks caused over the years, from seasonal temperature fluctuations, detailed monitoring of the movement of selected cracks over 17 months impact-echo technology, in which sound waves are sent into the concrete and the rebound is measured in order to locate voids within the walls extensive laser surveys of the exterior and interior surfaces, believed to be the largest laser model ever constructed core drilling to gather samples of the original concrete and other repair construction materials. Much of the interior was restored in 1992 and addition by Gwathmey Siegel and Associates Architects. The restorations includes the skylights, windows, doors, concrete facades, exterior sidewalk, as well as the climate-control. It was to preserve as much significant historical properties with necessary repairs and a suitable environment of museum.

- Info Page: http://www.guggenheim.org/the_building.html

- Rendering Links:

- Model Link:

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Drawing by Mike K.
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