No. 548 . 01 February 2012 
ArchitectureWeek

ArchWeek Image

Crystal Bridges Museum - Safdie in Arkansas

by Michael Cockram

For those familiar with the remote and quiet beauty of the Ozarks of Northwest Arkansas, the sudden appearance of the Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art in Bentonville seems somewhat miraculous.

There had been, of course, much buzz leading up to the opening, but nothing could quite prepare the visitor for the arrival and the experience of peering down into a narrow ravine and seeing, some 30 feet (nine meters) below, a village of swirling forms set around a mirrored pond.

Architect Moshe Safdie placed the buildings at the bottom of the ravine to take advantage of the water and to preserve the mature trees that grew on the high ground. The overall effect is stunning.

The central conceit of the scheme wraps the galleries, set up as a series of pavilions, around a pond constructed by damming a small creek. The main galleries flank the water on the east and west sides and have concave roofs that sweep down toward the pond. The two glass-walled bridges, with their vaulted roofs, span the pond and connect the main galleries.

Adapting Influences

The device of damming and bridging the creek grew out of Safdie's visit to the nearby childhood home of the museum's benefactor, Walmart heiress Alice Walton.

"I saw that house and how Fay Jones had dammed the water and created a little pool," Safdie told ArchitectureWeek. "Once I went into the ravine, I immediately thought that the way to capture the spirit of the place is to dam the stream and create large bodies of water and then build around them."   >>>

Continue...

Contents · Design · Context · Building Culture · Technology · Search

 

ArchitectureWeek Daily Headlines

IN THIS ISSUE
 Contents/RSS
Design
Crystal Bridges Museum - Safdie in Arkansas
People and Places
People and Places
Culture
Oscar Niemeyer - Brazilian Modernist

AND MORE
  Current Contents
  People & Places
  Blog Center
  Book Center
  Download Center
  New Products
  Products Guide
  Classic Home
  Calendar
  Competitions
  Conferences
  Events & Exhibits
  Architecture Forum
  Architects Directory
  Topics Library
  Complete Archive
  Web Directory
  About ArchWeek
  Search
  Subscribe & Contribute
  Free Newsletters
   

 
QUIZ
 
NEXT WEEK
Send this to a friend       Subscribe       Contribute       Media Kit       Privacy       Comments     Twitter     Facebook
Special thanks to our sustaining subscribers, including Building Design UK,
Building Design News UK, Building Design Tenders UK, Building Trades UK, Building Trades China, and offering bathroom faucets, and bathroom vanities.


...
Next Page >
GREAT BUILDINGS   |   ARCHIPLANET   |   DISCUSSION   |   COMMUNITY   |   NEW BOOKS   |   BLOGS   |   SEARCH
http://www.ArchitectureWeek.com/2012/0201/index.html
© 2012 Artifice, Inc. - All Rights Reserved