Name

Whitney Museum

Location

New York City

Type

Institutional

Size

9,650 SF

Status

Current

Project nr

2205

In its continued pursuit of expanding access to the institution and art alike, the Whitney Museum of American Art enlisted Modellus Novus to redesign its existing ground floor restaurant & plaza, and cafe on its eighth floor terrace, currently under construction. Together with new commissions from acclaimed artists Rashid Johnson and Dyani White-Hawk-Polk, the museum’s hospitality environments find new ways of welcoming a larger diversity of patrons and celebrating the museum’s coveted location through negotiations between interior and exterior.

At the ground floor, Renzo Piano Building Workshop’s vision for a transparent and inviting public space is enhanced through two grand elements: Rashid Johnson’s mixed-media installation, a gridded metal structure that enmeshes interior and exterior and houses various objects, and a custom-designed, cantilevered 70-foot-long wood and paper lantern spanning the restaurant’s northern length. As the seemingly floating lantern gently gestures towards views of the Hudson River and illuminates those who work and gather underneath, Johnson’s new site-specific installation is strategically positioned to create a porous, dynamic threshold that grants visitors an immediate, visceral art experience.

 

Photos by Adrian Gaut

“Conceived to be open and welcoming to all, as well as smart, functional and joyful, [the space] offers food for both sustenance and thought to the discerning visitor…”

Wallpaper* Magazine

70

Foot-long cantilever lantern spanning the north wall

3

Rounds of sit tests to select chairs and stools

600

Linear feet of LED lights that illuminate the lantern

18

Ruby suede panels

6730

Miles the shoji panels featured on the lantern traveled from Japan

2150

Pounds the lantern weighs

1998.5

Linear feet of horizontal wooden slats used

1

Rashid Johnson installation

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