Arthur M. Sackler Museum
485 Broadway
(corner with Quincy Street) 
Cambridge
Massachusetts USA

James Stirling, Michael Wilford and Associates 1985

Harvard, with Aalto, Gropius and Le Corbusier already on campus, turned to British post-modernist James Stirling to design an extension to the Fogg, Harvard's oldest art museum.

Stirling's extension - the Sackler Museum - is an independent building across the street from the Fogg, but anticipates a future overhead bridge between the two. The large square window in the front (south) facade, which currently illuminates the gallery behind, is designed to receive the link if built. The two concrete cylinders dominating the facade may have a future role in the putative link also, but in the meantime must occupy themselves by ventilating the underground equipment room beneath, and 'symbolizing entrance.'

Entering between the pillars, a rather narrow stairway takes you straight up to the gallery level. The building has an L-shaped plan with its entrance on the narrow top of the 'L', and so is rather larger than first appearances suggest - including a lecture room for 300 in the basement. 

 

Simon Glynn 1998 and 2002


How to visit

The Sackler runs along the east side of Quincy Street in Harvard Yard, between Broadway and Cambridge Street, with its entrance in Broadway. Visitor information is available from the Harvard Art Museums web site at www.artmuseums.harvard.edu/sackler.

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