Let the party begin

Sharon McHugh
Sunday 14 Jun 2009

Guggenheim marks 50th Anniversary with a competition

The Guggenheim Museum turns 50 this year. To mark the occasion, the Museum has planned a year-long celebration chock full of activities. Highlights include the premiere of a documentary film with rare footage of Wright’s iconic building under construction; special exhibitions including one about Wright’s work and another that re-presents selected works from the inaugural art exhibition, new publications, and the opening of a new restaurant. For the design minded, the Guggenheim has teamed up with Google to launch a global design competition.

Called 'Design it Shelter', the competition is an online initiative that invites the public to create designs for a 100 sq ft structure in which to live and work for anywhere in the world using the 3D design tools Google Earth and Google Sketch Up. The competition, which opened on June 8th, Wright’s birthday, and closes on August 23rd, the 50th anniversary of the Museum’s opening, will conclude with the award of two prizes: a Juried Prize and a People’s Prize. The People’s Prize will be selected by the public by voting online while the Juried Prize, which also includes a cash award of $1,000, will be determined by a jury of experts. Jury members include Martin Cox, Principal, Bade Stageberg Cox; Neil M. Denari, Principal, Neil M. Denari Architects; Cathleen McGuigan, Architecture Critic, Newsweek; Victor Sidy, Dean of the Frank Lloyd Wright School of Architecture; Lisa Strausfeld, Partner, Pentagram; Aidan Chopra, Product Evangelist, Google SketchUp; and David van der Leer, Assistant Curator of Architecture and Design at the Guggenheim. For more information or to register visit the competition web site at www.guggenheim.org/shelter.

The 50th anniversary comes on the heels of the 2008 completion of the Museum’s four-year restoration. In honour of that milestone and to mark the anniversary, the Guggenheim has released a new book entitled 'The Guggenheim: Frank Lloyd Wright and the Making of the Modern Museum', which explores the history of the building and Wright’s 16-year relationship with his client. For a complete listing of the 50th anniversary events and programming go to www.guggenheim.org.

Sharon McHugh
US Correspondent

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