San Francisco Museum of Modern Art

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San Francisco Museum of Modern Art

The San Francisco Museum of Modern Art (SFMoMA) is a modern art museum located in San Francisco, California. A nonprofit organization, SFMoMA holds an internationally recognized collection of modern and contemporary art and was the first museum on the West Coast devoted solely to 20th century art. The museum’s current collection includes over 26,000 works of painting, sculpture, photography, architecture, design, and media arts. The building complex was designed by Swiss architect Mario Botta. SFMOMA's Research Library was established in 1935 and contains extensive resources pertaining to modern and contemporary art, including books, periodicals, artists’ files, and lecture recordings. The museum also houses a restaurant, Caffè Museo, and a coffee bar run by the Blue Bottle Coffee Company...read more at freebase

Architect Mario Botta says: "The situation of the museum building on a plot surrounded by a three high-rise blocks encouraged the adoption of a particularly powerful image, while at the same time  avoiding and direct-and inevitably disadvantageous - comparison with its surroundings. The scheme was carried out with three declared objectives:

 - Natural lighting, in spite of the unfavourable one-to-four relationship between the area of the site and total built surface called for by the programme.

 - The creation of a unitary interior image.

 - The construction of an external skin which, the opposite of a shell, effectively leaves the building  faceless, thus stimulating visitors to enter.

The stepped facade to the fore, finished with brick, accommodates the series of exhibition  spaces, all lit from above. This facade opens up in the center to reveal the presence of the cylindrical volume clad with bands of marble in two colours. This totem-like figure is cut off at a slanting angle at the top, emerging from the roof with an oblique transparent plane which captures the natural light and conducts it down into the spacious cavity in the centre of the building, around which are ordered the distribution routes giving access to the exhibition rooms."

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