the menil drawing institute, a building designed by LA-based architects johnston marklee, readies for its public opening on november 3, 2018. the project forms part of the menil collection, a 30-acre neighborhood of art located in houston, texas. the campus’ main building, designed by renzo piano, houses special exhibitions and the institution’s permanent collection, while smaller structures are dedicated to single artists — cy twombly and dan flavin — and year-long installation projects. rising to a total height of 16 feet (4.8 meters), the scale of the drawing institute mediates between the residential bungalows that surround the campus and the more substantial architecture of the main museum building.


all images by richard barnes, courtesy of the menil collection, houston

 

 

the menil drawing institute has been built expressly for the acquisition, exhibition, study, conservation, and storage of modern and contemporary drawings. designed by johnston marklee, in collaboration with landscape architects michael van valkenburgh associates, the 30,000-square-foot, $40 million USD building will be inaugurated with an exhibition spanning the career of artist jasper johns.

 

 

two square, open-roofed, landscaped courtyards serve as entrances. running between them, a large space — referred to as the ‘living room’ — functions as both a circulation spine and a place of gathering. meanwhile, a third courtyard creates a ‘scholars’ cloister’ on the building’s north side. internally, a custom collection of benches, tables, and other furniture — inspired by the elemental, structural forms of the building itself — has been created by johnston marklee in collaboration with jeff jamieson. see designboom’s previous coverage of the project here.

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