The Lynda and Stewart Resnick Exhibition Pavilion, a key feature of LACMA’s ongoing Transformation, dramatically expands the museum’s exhibition space and also further unifies the western half of the museum’s twenty-acre campus. The new building, which opens to the public with a free community weekend October 2–3, 2010, is designed by Renzo Piano, founder, Renzo Piano Building Workshop.
The building is named in honor of long-time patrons Lynda and Stewart Resnick, whose $45 million donation was the lead gift in Phase II of LACMA’s Transformation campaign. The Resnicks’ generosity was further demonstrated by their promise of works of art valued at $10 million. Mrs. Resnick, a LACMA trustee since 1992, is currently vice chair of the museum’s Board of Trustees and chair of the Acquisitions Committee. She and Mr. Resnick are leading arts philanthropists with wide-ranging charitable interests that span from medical research to education.
The Resnick Pavilion, a single-story, 45,000 square foot structure, is the largest purpose-built, naturally lit, open-plan museum space in the world. It opens with a trio of exhibitions that highlight both the diversity of the museum’s encyclopedic collection and programming, as well as the flexibility of the new building: Eye for the Sensual: Selections from the Resnick Collection; Olmec: Colossal Masterworks of Ancient Mexico; and Fashioning Fashion: European Dress in Detail, 1700–1915.
LACMA CEO and Wallis Annenberg Director Michael Govan states, ―Lynda and Stewart Resnick have been true champions of LACMA, demonstrated most visibly by their boundless generosity in supporting the creation of the Renzo Piano-designed exhibition pavilion which bears their names. The facility is unlike almost any in the world, improving and expanding LACMA’s exhibition galleries, while freeing up space to show more of our permanent collection
Lynda Resnick adds, ―It was a great time to get behind LACMA, which, with its enlightening exhibitions and expanding collections, has truly emerged as a world-class museum. Stewart and I are pleased to make a contribution that builds upon the growing momentum at the institution while also contributing to the cultural vitality of a major twenty-first century art capital.‖
The Resnick Pavilion is a naturally lit, glass and stone-enclosed structure sited immediately north of the Broad Contemporary Art Museum (BCAM), which opened in February 2008. The new building, the cornerstone of Phase II of the museum’s Transformation, complements BCAM architecturally—both buildings feature roof and ceiling elements that flood the galleries with light. While the northern and southern walls of the building are also glass-clad, creating an indoor/outdoor effect, the eastern and western walls are covered with travertine marble that originates from the same quarry as the marble used on BCAM’s facade. The red motif established in Phase I (e.g., BCAM’s escalator, the BP Grand Entrance, and the Kendall Concourse) is continued via the mechanical systems and technical rooms on the exterior of the Resnick Pavilion. The interior gallery is notable not only for its remarkable volume and quality of light but for its flexibility that allows for the presentation of multiple exhibitions at once as well as large-scale works of art.
Eye for the Sensual: Selections from the Resnick Collection
Eye for the Sensual features more than 100 paintings, sculptures, and decorative arts from the collection of Lynda and Stewart Resnick. Since the early 1980s, the Resnicks have collected in many areas ranging from European to American and modern art. This exhibition reflects their interest in European painting, sculpture, and decorative arts from the sixteenth to the early twentieth century. The exhibition is curated by J. Patrice Marandel, LACMA’s Robert H. Ahmanson Chief Curator of European Art, and Bernard Jazzar, Curator of the Lynda and Stewart Resnick Collection. The installation for Eye for the Sensual and Fashioning Fashion will be designed by world-famous stage designers Studio Pier Luigi Pizzi-Massimo Pizzi Gasparon.
Olmec: Colossal Masterworks of Ancient Mexico
Olmec: Colossal Masterworks of Ancient Mexico is the first West Coast exhibition of massive works and small-scale sculptures produced by Mexico’s earliest civilization. Olmec-style artworks reveal the great mastery of the architects and artists who produced the earliest monumental structures and sculptures on the North American continent. These include enormous basalt portrait heads of their rulers in addition to small-scale, intricately carved objects from such precious stones as jadeite. The opening of Olmec coincides with Los Angeles celebrations of the bicentennial of Mexico’s independence and the centennial of the Mexican revolution. Featuring approximately 120 works, the exhibition is co-organized by Mexico’s Instituto Nacional de Antropología e Historia, LACMA, and the Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco, and is curated at LACMA by Virginia Fields, senior curator of Arts of the Ancient Americas.
Fashioning Fashion: European Dress in Detail, 1700–1915
Fashioning Fashion features selections from the museum’s recently acquired major collection of European men’s, women’s, and children’s dress and accessories. The exhibition includes nearly 160 examples of fashionable dress, undergarments, and accessories, many on view for the first time. Curated by Sharon S. Takeda, department head and senior curator, and Kaye D. Spilker, curator of costume and textiles at LACMA, the exhibition will tell the story of fashion’s aesthetic and technical development from the Age of Enlightenment to World War I.
Lynda and Stewart Resnick
Mrs. Resnick has served as a member of LACMA’s Board of Trustees since 1992. She is vice chair of the Board and chair of the museum’s Acquisitions Committee. Mrs. Resnick also serves on the Executive Board of the Aspen Institute, for which she chairs the Communications Committee; the Executive Board for the UCLA Medical Sciences; the Prostate Cancer Foundation; and the Milken Family Foundation. She is also a trustee of the Philadelphia Museum of Art. Mr. Resnick currently serves as a member of the Executive Board of the UCLA Medical Sciences; the Board of Trustees of Bard College, Annandale-on-Hudson, NY; the Board of Trustees of the J. Paul Getty Trust; and the Board of Conservation International. He is also a trustee of the California Institute of Technology and a member of the Advisory Board of the Anderson School of Management, University of California, Los Angeles.
Since its inception in 1965, LACMA has been devoted to collecting works of art that span both history and geography-and represent Los Angeles’s uniquely diverse population. Today, the museum features particularly strong collections of Asian, Latin American, European, and American art, as well as a contemporary museum on its campus. With this expanded space for contemporary art, innovative collaborations with artists, and an ongoing Transformation project, LACMA is creating a truly modern lens through which to view its rich encyclopedic collection.
The second phase of LACMA’s Transformation builds upon the unification of the museum’s campus with the addition of the Lynda and Stewart Resnick Exhibition Pavilion, a flexible, naturally lit structure dedicated to the presentation of art. When combined with the Broad Contemporary Art Museum (BCAM), which was completed during Phase I, LACMA has added nearly 100,000 square feet of gallery space since 2008. Outdoor artist projects, a keystone of the Transformation initiated in Phase I, continue to play an integral role in Phase II with the addition of Michael Heizer’s Levitated Mass 2006–2009 as well as the extension of Robert Irwin’s Palm Garden, begun in 2008. Additionally, the BP Grand Entrance will evolve to incorporate a glass-walled restaurant designed by Renzo Piano and a single ticketing area.
PHASE I: Completed February 2008
Phase I of LACMA’s Transformation began the unification and expansion of the museum’s campus. The project added 60,000 square feet of new gallery space via BCAM; a new central gathering space, the BP Grand Entrance; the Dona S. and Dwight M. Kendall Concourse, which enables visitors to easily traverse the galleries and piazzas across LACMA’s campus; and the Jeanne and Anthony Pritzker Family Foundation Parking Garage, which occupies two levels underground with dedicated spaces for more than 500 self-parked cars or 700 valet-parked cars. Existing areas were reenvisioned, such as the interior of the Ahmanson Building, which links the east and west sides of the campus while also redirecting the flow of foot traffic through the building. Tony Smith’s Smoke, a massive aluminum sculpture and recent museum acquisition, is installed at the foot of the newly created staircase in the Ahmanson’s David Bohnett Atrium.
The addition of the BCAM galleries advanced LACMA’s strategy to integrate contemporary art into its exhibitions and public programs and to explore the interplay of the art of our time with that of the past, as is underscored by the 2008 reinstallation of the entire Latin American collection. The reinterpreted space incorporates innovative casework design for the art of the ancient Americas collection built by renowned Los Angeles artist Jorge Pardo, providing a fresh context for viewing objects that are hundreds of years old. Further, the BCAM gallery space has enabled LACMA to shift and reorganize several major areas of its collections, including the 350-piece installation of modern works, encompassing objects from the Robert Gore Rifkind Center for German Expressionist Studies and the Lazarof Collection, acquired in 2008. The installation occupies 22,000 square feet of space in the dramatically refurbished Ahmanson Building. The American and Korean art collections have both been prominently reinstalled as well and the majority of the European painting and sculpture collection has returned to public view, also in a dramatically revitalized space.
• The construction of the Lynda and Stewart Resnick Exhibition Pavilion, a free-standing, 45,000 square foot single-story building, located directly north of the Broad Contemporary Art Museum (BCAM) and atop the Pritzker Parking Garage, both built in Phase I; featuring a naturally lit open floor plan, concrete floor, and a saw-tooth roof with vertical glazing; designed by Renzo Piano and opens to the public October 2, 2010.
• The rehabilitation of the surrounding park, as part of the Kelly and Robert Day Gardens, which include the expansion of Robert Irwin’s grid of palm trees to the areas around the Resnick Pavilion and other buildings on LACMA’s campus.
• The reconfiguration of space in the BP Grand Entrance, including a new restaurant designed by Renzo Piano and a centralized ticketing area. Both will be sited along the eastern side of the Grand Entrance in a glass and steel structure. Existing ticketing booths, repurposed shipping containers, will be removed. Restaurant is scheduled to open January 2011.
• The installation of Michael Heizer’s Levitated Mass 2006–2009, a boulder weighing 683,000 pounds that will be suspended on two concrete rails, enabling visitors to walk through the carved-out earth underneath; to be sited just north of the Resnick Pavilion and slated to be installed fall 2011.
Future plans for Phase II also include the renovation of LACMA West (the 300,000-square-foot former May Company building) and the addition of artists’ projects such as James Turrell’s Missed Approach and Boullée’s Boule, both slated for LACMA West, and Jeff Koons’s Train. The latter, a seventy-foot replica of a 1940s locomotive to be suspended from a 161-foot-tall crane, would dangle over the north piazza adjacent to the BP Grand Entrance, releasing steam, rotating wheels, and chugging three times a day. Feasibility studies for the project, made possible by the Annenberg Foundation, are nearing completion.
June 2003 Eli and Edythe Broad make lead gift to Transformation campaign to add a contemporary art building (BCAM) to LACMA campus
Oct 2003 Renzo Piano invited to create master plan for LACMA
Feb 2004 LACMA Board approves master plan
May 2004 LACMA announces selection of Renzo Piano; reveals designs to public
Apr 2004 Launch of capital campaign (silent phase among Board members only)
Jul 2004 Tax-exempt bond financing secured
Nov 2005 Andrea Rich retires as President and Director; Ogden Drive closed
Dec 2005 Construction begins
Mar 2006 Ancient animal remains found on site
Apr 2006 Michael Govan appointed as CEO and Wallis Annenberg Director
Mar 2007 Construction of BP Grand Entrance begins; Phase I fundraising surpasses $150 million goal
Sep 2007 Parking structure complete
Jan 2008 Phase I fundraising concludes at $201 million
Feb 2008 BCAM and other Phase I features open to the public
Sep 2008 Lynda and Stewart Resnick donate $55 million to LACMA, $45 million to be used to build the Lynda and Stewart Resnick Exhibition Pavilion
Oct 2010 Lynda and Stewart Resnick Exhibition Pavilion opens to the public
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