April 28, 2014

The Guggenheim in New York City

The Guggenheim Museum on the Upper East Side of Manhattan in New York is appealing for its collection of art and for the building in which the art is displayed. In fact, the building is reason enough to visit.

It is a building created by the amazing Frank Lloyd Wright and it is the only museum he ever designed. Solomon Guggenheim, part of a wealthy family that made much of their fortune in the gold fields of Alaska and Yukon, wanted to create a radically new space for modern art in New York. He chose Frank Lloyd Wright as architect and after sixteen years of planning, debate and compromise, the building finally opened in 1959.

Originally the architect wanted people to take an elevator to the top of the structure and then leisurely walk down the gentle and continuous ramp, interacting with both art and other humans along the way.

Taking an elevator certainly isn't the practise and we, and hundreds of others, meandered up the ramp and then slightly more quickly down again. It was interesting to view The Guggenheim after seeing Wright's desert campus in Arizona four months ago. This is an impressive building and it houses an amazing collection of art. The wealth and power that created such an undertaking is amazing too.

Photos by Jim Murray. Copyright 2014.