The Museum Transformed: Design and Culture in the Post-Pompidou Age

Douglas Davis, Author, Jack Long, Foreword by, Jack Lang, Designed by Abbeville Press $29.98 (238p) ISBN 978-1-55859-064-9
Opposing the established image of the museum as a treasure house or palace of culture, the idea of a museum as ``anti-palace'' won ground with the 1977 opening in Paris of the Pompidou Center, a steel-and-glass skeleton which many saw as a desanctification of art. In a tour de force of cultural interpretation, Newsweek architecture critic Davis examines the transformation of the contemporary museum, ranging from I. M. Pei's pristine pyramid astride the Louvre to the museum as populist symbol, e.g., the Dallas Museum of Art. The ``non-style style,'' born in low-rent, artist-managed alternative spaces, blossomed in the Dia Foundation in Manhattan and in 98-A Boundary Road, British media-magnate Charles Saatchi's London warehouse devoted to minimalism and neo-expressionism. Davis detects a recent countermovement back to cloistered ``palace'' ideals, as exemplified in Richard Meier's ``self-ennobling'' High Museum in Atlanta. More than 200 illustrations (half in color) accompany the text. (Oct.)
Reviewed on: 08/29/1990
Release date: 09/01/1990
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