Museum Builders IIBook - 2004
"The museum has enjoyed an extensive history but has never been more popular than it is today. With the recent explosion in cultural tourism, museums have been proliferating at an unprecedented rate. Certain fundamental concerns however, have remained as constant factors in their story; most notably the museum's role as a significant site for the construction and depiction of identity. Museum Builders II explores 28 contemporary museum commissions, which both demonstrated and generate aspects of identify, be they national, ethnic, regional, civic, or personal." "The dialogue of 'issues of identity' finds many diverse architectural expressions in the contemporary museum buildings highlighted here, which have been drawn from across the globe. The projects vary dramatically in scale, context, thematics and intent but all raise questions of architectural representation." "Many museum architects have turned to the natural landscape for inspiration, often for aesthetic or pragmatic reasons, but at times to invest their buildings with a specific identity. Similarly, rich archaeological and architectural caches have been plundered by designers in a quest to give identity to their built form. Several of the featured museum projects address the meeting of cultures, which were defining moments in history, and these encounters have left a tenacious legacy on the architecture and exhibitions of those museums. Most resonant here is the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum: a deeply poignant physical monument to one of the most horrifying and inhumane encounters in human history, and a most extreme example of the museum's lasting role in the construction and depiction of identities."--Jacket.