A MEANDER THROUGH MONOLITHISM
Partner: Yixuan Cai
Instructor: Jackilin Hah Bloom
Year: 2020 Spring
The new LACMA serves as a home for its art collection both physically and digitally, it explores the concept of how digital art gallery and traditional gallery can co-exist and intertwined within a fluid space of a museum, while at the same time, it serves as a display platform for digital archiving and image reprocessing of the existing art collection of LACMA.
We believe that museum experience is often linear, despite gallery spaces could come in different sizes and forms, as a visitor, we spend most of time looking at artwork that is directly in front of our eyes. We wish to create a building which allows the experience of visitors to be peculiarly designed and carefully thought out beforehand.
The new LACMA building is a composition of volumes that make up a bar building that gives way to interconnected platforms and circulation tubes that can be seen from the sculpture park on the north side of the site. Visitors get access to the museum through multiple entrances, from meandering through the sculpture park of the Tar Pits, to approaching the monolithic frontage of the museum along the Wilshire Boulevard, the new LACMA provides a museum experience to its visitors- from casual outdoor exhibits, to well-presented indoor galleries.
The Museum is divided into two main galleries - the traditional gallery and the digital gallery. The former serves as a display for the existing LACMA’s art collection, while the latter serves as an interactive gallery that allows its visitors to reprocess existing art pieces. The two types of spaces are interconnected with a set of circulation pathways allowing visitors to view the art pieces from different perspectives.
When entering the traditional gallery from its main entrance, the visitors firstly come into a linear and large gallery space that is divided into multiple floors. The gallery stores and displays all of LACMA’s encyclopedic collection physically in spaces of poche. The multi-level viewing platforms have allowed the visitors to view the art pieces from different perspectives, while at the same time the circulation pathways elevated above connect these gallery spaces together.
Unlike the traditional gallery, the digital gallery sits as a taller but narrower displaying space on the east side of the building. It is an area to accommodate and display the digitized archive of the existing LACMA’s art collection. It consists of immersive theaters, art workshops and digitized galleries that promote new ways of seeing, learning and rethinking about existing artwork of LACMA. The different displaying and interactive stages within the galleries are designed to showcase different types of artwork virtually, it is also an area which has allowed the visitors to reprocess and re-curate new forms of art from the existing archive.
Ultimately, the new LACMA is a collection of galleries of different sizes and types, that are converged together formally, to promote various methods of displaying and accommodating artwork. The museum offers a resultant experience which is one that can only happen at the place of the new LACMA, and it aims at providing a cultural experience through the architecture to its visitors, from daily encounters to occasional visits.