In 1966, architect Marcel Breuer designed this amazing sculpturally shaped building on the corner of Madison Avenue and 75th Street, just one block east of Central Park.
Breuer wanted to create something befitting a new Museum of Contemporary Art and was quoted as saying:
“What should a museum look like, a museum in Manhattan? Surely it should work, it should fulfill its requirements, but what is its relationship to the New York landscape? What does it express, what is its architectural message?
“It is easier to say first what it should not look like. It should not look like a business or office building, nor should it look like a place of light entertainment. Its form and its material should have identity and weight in the neighborhood of 50-story skyscrapers, of mile long bridges, in the midst of the dynamic jungle of our colorful city. It should be an independent and self- relying unit, exposed to history, and at the same time it should transform the vitality of the street into the sincerity and profundity of art.”
And so he designed a very striking, and to many, a very confrontational work of architecture, which can be seen in these photos taken at the time by respected architectural photographer Ezra Stoller.
After extensive and sensitive restorations by architects Beyer Blinder Belle, the building has been reincarnated as The Met Breuer, housing collections from the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York.
Place: The Met Breuer
Photographer: Ed Lederman
Map: The Met Breuer
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