in 2017, the academy museum unveiled detailed plans for its new building, a complex billed as ‘the world’s premier film institution’. located on wilshire and fairfax in los angeles, the museum states that it has three primary goals: to convey the power of movies, to give viewers a behind-the-scenes look into how films are made, and to explore their impact on culture and our lives. italian architect renzo piano was was chosen to complete the project in may 2012, before construction began on site in 2015. the institution is on track to open its doors later in 2019.

renzo piano academy museum los angeles
image © academy museum foundation
(main image by joshua white JWPictures / © academy museum foundation)

 

 

renzo piano’s design comprises two distinct buildings that form the academy museum’s 300,000-square-foot campus. the six-storey saban building — a designated los angeles historic-cultural monument — will feature more than 50,000 square feet of exhibition galleries, a state-of-the-art education studio, a 288-seat theater, a restaurant and café, a store, and public event spaces. meanwhile, a soaring globe-shaped addition — appropriately titled ‘the sphere’ — will include a 1,000-seat theater and will host a range of performances, screenings, premieres, and events. at its top, an expansive terrace will afford sweeping views of the hollywood hills.

renzo piano academy museum los angeles
image © academy museum foundation

 

 

occupying two floors of the saban building, the museum will open with a long-term exhibition that explores the evolution of film. the institution has also announced a temporary exhibition dedicated to japanese animator hayao miyazaki, which will be followed in 2020 by an exhibition that reveals the important and under-recognized history of african-american filmmakers in the development of american cinema. meanwhile, the museum’s 34-foot-high project space will open with a major work by the tokyo-based interdisciplinary art collective teamlab, while additional exhibitions include an in-depth look at the wizard of oz, featuring elements that contributed to the creation of the film.

renzo piano academy museum los angeles
image © academy museum foundation

 

 

the academy museum has actively been acquiring three-dimensional motion picture objects since 2008. its holdings now number approximately 2,500 items representing motion picture technology, costume design, production design, makeup and hairstyling, and promotional materials. separate from the core exhibition, the third floor also features an oscars experience, which uses technology to place visitors on hollywood’s famous red carpet and gives them the chance to hold a real oscar as they accept their award ‘on stage’. see designboom’s previous coverage of the project here.

renzo piano academy museum los angeles
image by joshua white JWPictures / © academy museum foundation

renzo piano academy museum los angeles
image by joshua white JWPictures / © academy museum foundation

renzo piano academy museum los angeles
image by joshua white JWPictures / © academy museum foundation

renzo piano academy museum los angeles
image by joshua white JWPictures / © academy museum foundation

renzo piano academy museum los angeles
image by joshua white JWPictures / © academy museum foundation

renzo piano academy museum los angeles
image © academy museum foundation

renzo piano academy museum los angeles
an exterior rendering illustrating the final design | read more here
image © renzo piano building workshop / © academy museum foundation / image from l’autre image

 

 

project info:

 

name: academy museum of motion pictures
location: wilshire & fairfax, los angeles, CA
design architect: renzo piano with renzo piano building workshop, new york, NY, with contribution to concept design by studio pali fekete architects
executive architect: gensler, los angeles, CA
exhibition designer: rick carter and gallagher & associates
scheduled opening: late 2019

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