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November 8, 2004

Expansion Fever, Catch It

Tyler Green gave a heads up yesterday on tomorrow's planned unveiling of the Whitney's expansion plans, as designed by Renzo Piano. Tyler lists among other recent, current and future museum projects undertaken by Piano's workshop the recently completed Nasher Sculpture Center in Dallas, a contemporary wing for LACMA in LA (amid a cloud of controversy) and a project under consideration for the Gardner Museum in Boston.

Missing from his list: the Art Institute of Chicago's major expansion, a (mostly) contemporary and modern wing currently slated for 2007. Located alongside Millennium Park, the Pritzker Prize-winning architect's new wing will find itself in an architectonic showdown with Pritzker Prize-winner Frank Gehry's shiny new Pritzker Pavillion.

The AIC expansion project continues apace, as signaled by a story in Friday's Trib reporting that Moody's Investors Service has upgraded the institute's credit outlook in part on the strength of their expansion fundraising:

Moody's cited the institute's plans for a $198 million addition to be designed by Renzo Piano. It said the institute appears able to raise enough gifts to build and endow the wing without needing to issue bonds.

See more in the AIC press release, via PR Newswire.

No word as to how much the public will be asked to kick in. As of September the public share of the cost stood at $185 million of the $285 million total needed for construction and endowment (per Victor Cassidy, who noted that new AIC director James Cuno—who took leave of the Harvard University Art Museums when plans for a new Piano-designed museum on the Charles were scrapped—"was hired specifically to get the new wing up").

"Expansion Fever, Catch It"
Posted by Dan at 04:23 PM

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Referenced in this post:

Art Institute of Chicago: Art Institute Proceeds with Plans for New Renzo Piano Wing
Art Newspaper: Renzo Piano chosen for the Los Angeles County Museum of Art—Jason Edward Kaufman
Artnet: James Cuno’s Chicago Problems—Victor M. Cassidy
Boston Globe: Harvard selects a new art museum director—Geoff Edgers
Chicago Tribune: Moody's revises rating of Art Institute credit—Charles Storch
Harvard University Art Museums
Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum
LAist: Broad Power at LACMA
Millennium Park
Modern Art Notes: Weekend Scoop
Moodys.com
PR Newswire: Art Institute of Chicago Moody's A1 Rating on Long-Term Debt Affirmed; Outlook Upgraded to Stable From Negative
Pritzker Architecture Prize
Renzo Piano Building Workshop: Works—Chicago Art Institute Expansion
Renzo Piano Building Workshop: Works—Nasher Sculpture Center
Repeat: Frank Gehry and his new New Pritzker bandshell
Whitney Museum of American Art: Whitney Museum Selects Architect Renzo Piano To Design Museum Expansion