Museum of Modern Art
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Architect Philip S. Goodwin and Edward D. Stone
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Location New York, New York   map
Date 1938 to 1939   timeline
Building Type art museum
 Construction System concrete and steel frame, curtain wall
Climate temperate
Context urban
Style Modern
Notes Building opens inside to modern sculpture garden. Later addition by Cesar Pelli.


Photo, exterior

Photo, interior, entry space


Plan Drawing

Section Drawing

Discussion Museum of Modern Art Commentary

"A few years ago an art museum was a repository for static collections. Almost any pompous building served. Today's problem is to provide for constantly changing exhibitions and an expanding program of public services. A building must first of all be flexible.

"The entrance faŤade has little to do with floor and ceiling levels and ignores the vertical shaft of the staircase, yet has dramatic appeal of its own. The ground floor is separated from the street by clear glass. Above are the two main gallery floors, with walls of translucent insulating glass. Then come two stories of offices and the pierced roof slab of the member's penthouse. Walls are hung with white marble and blue tile."

— from Elizabeth Mock, ed. Built in the USA Since 1932. p88.

The Creator's Words

"There is too much conformity in contemporary architecture. I like to think of architecture as an individual creative expression; I get more pleasure out of my work if I carry through my own convictions rather than pursue a dogma outlined by some other architect. An architect should try to find his own expression. At one juncture the work of many people looks alike. The paintings of the Impressionists, for example, or of the Cubists, working in the same movement at the same time, looked quite similar. As time passed, however, each worked into his own individual style. In this age of standardization, Americans need more than ever to cultivate the open mind. Those who assert their individually should find greater tolerance from their fellow; if our flights of fancy fond receptive audiences and each of us were encouraged to be an individual, our lives would be enriched."

— Edward Durell Stone. from Paul Heyer. Architects on Architecture: New Directions in America. p177-178.

Sources on Museum of Modern Art

Kenneth Frampton with Yukio Futagawa. Modern Architecture 1851-1945. New York: Rizzoli International Publications, 1983. ISBN 0-8478-0506-9. LC 83-61363. NA642.F7 1983. longitudinal section, p439. third floor plan, p439. exterior photo from street, p438. exterior photo from garden court, p439. — Available at

Paul Heyer. American Architecture: Ideas and Ideologies in the Late Twentieth Century. New York: Van Nostrand Reinhold, 1993. ISBN 0-442-01328-0. LC 92-18415. NA2750.H48. discussion, p177-178. exterior photo of garden space, p202.

Lawrence A. Martin, University of Oregon. Slide from photographer's collection, September 1993. PCD.3235.1012.0545.086. PCD.3235.1012.0545.080.

Elizabeth Mock, ed. Built in the USA Since 1932. New York: The Museum of Modern Art, 1945. LC 68-57299. NA712.N45 1968. discussion, p88.

Kevin Matthews. The Great Buildings Collection on CD-ROM. Artifice, 2001. ISBN 0-9667098-4-5.— Available at  Find books about Museum of Modern Art


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