Photo via Flickr cc
This year, the American Museum of Natural History celebrates its 150th anniversary. Though best known for its spectacular T. Rex skeletons and incredible hanging blue whale, the story of this Upper West Side museum isn’t just one of dinosaurs and dioramas. For example, did you know that Ulysses S. Grant laid the cornerstone? Or how about that in the 1930s, there was a proposal to build a promenade through Central Park to connect the Museum with the Met? Ahead, we’ve rounded up eight things you might not know about the American Museum of Natural History.
Photo via Blue Man Group
NYC’s favorite blue-painted performance group is getting its very own exhibition at the Museum of the City of New York. Starting this Friday and lasting until September 2nd, Blue Man Group will debut an exhibition that showcases their unique, paint-covered style. The exhibit is just as zany as the group, and features LED screens with endlessly scrolling text, an interactive camera, and their original 27-year-old PVC pipe instrument decorated with UV paint, on loan from the Group’s archives. Visitors are encouraged to interact with the installation, as well as bang out some tunes of their own.
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Photo via Wiki Commons
Eight buildings designed by Frank Lloyd Wright have been named UNESCO World Heritage sites, including New York City’s iconic Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum. The buildings were given heritage status by the organization’s World Heritage Committee at a July 7 meeting (h/t Dezeen). Additional Wright creations named to the list are Fallingwater (Pennsylvania), Frederick C. Robie House (Illinois), Hollyhock House (California), the Herbert and Katherine Jacobs House (Wisconsin), Unity Temple (Illinois), and Wright’s homes and studios at Taliesin, Wisconsin and Taliesin West, Arizona.
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Photo by Nicole Mondrus for 6sqft
While hotels and parks around the city are getting ready for the Macy’s 4th of July Fireworks Show, the New York Public Library is going the historical route with their celebrations–by putting a rare copy of the Declaration of Independence on display. This copy, written in Thomas Jefferson’s handwriting, will be available to view for a limited time next Monday and Tuesday at their iconic Bryant Park location.
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Renderings via OMA/Bloomimages.de
The New Museum has revealed the first look at plans for its second building, designed by OMA’s Shohei Shigematsu and Rem Koolhaas in collaboration with Cooper Robertson. The design replaces an existing property at 231 Bowery that the museum acquired in 2008 with a seven-story, 60,000 square-foot building that will double the museum’s exhibition space, provide a permanent home for its cultural incubator NEW INC, as well as increased public amenities and improved circulation. As 6sqft reported when the project was first announced in 2017, this will be OMA’s first public building in New York City.
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Images courtesy of Tri-Lox
A new interactive playscape created by design and fabrication practice Tri-Lox brings creative play to the rooftop terrace at Brooklyn Children’s Museum in Crown Heights. Inspired by the unique nests made by the baya weaver bird, Nest is made from reclaimed NYC water tower wood fashioned into an organic form; the woven landscape has a climbable exterior, circular hammock area and permeable interior space, all designed to foster free play and discovery.
Find out what makes this playscape so special
The Center’s historic Hunterfly Road Houses via Wiki Commons
The Weeksville Heritage Center has been added to a list of 33 Cultural Institutions Groups (CIG), guaranteeing the museum will have its basic operating costs covered, as Curbed first reported. After revealing its precarious financial position earlier this year, Weeksville launched a crowdfunding campaign in May to meet the Center’s short-term operating costs. The effort ended up bringing in over $266,000 from more than 4,100 donors around the world. The coveted CIG designation—the first new addition in more than 20 years and the first black cultural center in Brooklyn to make the list—means that Weeksville will be able to enjoy greater stability as it continues to share its vital mission with visitors and the community.
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A rendering of the front façade of the Gilder Center (L) by Studio Gang, 2019; Center interior (R) by MIR and Studio Gang, 2019.
Following delays caused by a lawsuit aimed at protecting the adjacent, city-owned Theodore Roosevelt Park, a groundbreaking ceremony on June 12 officially kicked off construction of the American Museum of Natural History’s new Richard Gilder Center for Science, Education, and Innovation. Designed by architect Jeanne Gang—who was initially brought on board the project seven years ago—the $383 million Center will add new galleries, classrooms, a theatre, and an expanded library while linking 10 museum buildings for better circulation throughout the campus. Originally slated to open in 2020, the construction process is expected to last three years.
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Photo by Monika Graff for the 9/11 Memorial & Museum
The 9/11 Memorial & Museum’s new monument honoring first responders opened Thursday, on the 17th anniversary of the official end of the recovery effort at Ground Zero. The 9/11 Memorial Glade monument recognizes first responders who are currently sick or who have died from illnesses caused by toxins following the September 11 attacks. Located at the World Trade Center site, the memorial consists of six stone monoliths that point skyward to “symbolize strength and determination through adversity.”
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The Statue of Liberty is a universally recognized structure and symbol. But do most people know the story of its creation? Opening this Thursday, the new Statue of Liberty Museum aims to educate visitors about the history and legacy of the statue through immersive gallery spaces and artifacts. During a press preview last week, 6sqft toured the 26,000-square-foot museum and its landscaped roof, located on Liberty Island across from Lady Liberty herself.
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