David Adjaye of Adjaye Associates has been selected as design architect, in collaboration with Cooper Robertson as executive architect, for the new Princeton University Art Museum.
The new museum will be built on the site of the old one. Erin Firestone, manager of marketing and public relations for the museum, said the design goal is to retain the Gothic Revival structure designed by Robert Cram along with the Marquand Art Library.
The university said the new museum will include enlarged exhibit areas and room for special exhibitions and art conservation, object study classrooms, and office space for a staff of 100.
Firestone said the museum plans to close its doors in 2020 and re-open three years later when the project is complete. However, this could change as the plan develops. Firestone said the museum will look for ways to continue to serve the campus and the broader community during the closure.
The architect that Princeton selected to design the new museum is responsible for a number of famous structures around the world.
“Sir David Adjaye is a renowned architect who has designed superb buildings for some of the world’s most admired cultural institutions,” said Princeton President Christopher L. Eisgruber. “Having taught on this campus, he understands fully what the university and the art museum are looking to accomplish. I am thrilled that Adjaye Associates and their skilled collaborators at Cooper Robertson will serve as the architects for this project.”
Adjaye is the principal and founder of Adjaye Associates, with offices in London; New York; and Accra, Ghana, and projects in the United States, United Kingdom, Europe, Africa, Asia and the Middle East.
Adjaye was born in Tanzania to Ghanaian parents and his influences range from contemporary art, music and science to African art forms and the civic life of cities. His work spans residential, commercial, corporate, retail and arts and civic institutions. He is also known for his frequent collaboration with contemporary artists on installations and exhibitions.
Most notably, he designed the central pavilion and main exhibition spaces for the 56th Venice Art Biennale with curator Okwui Enwezor in 2015. His largest project to date, the Smithsonian National Museum of African American History and Culture, opened on the National Mall in Washington, D.C., in fall, 2016. From 2008 through 2010 Adjaye was a visiting professor at Princeton.
“Adjaye Associates and Cooper Robertson, both prominent architects in their own right, have teamed up to bring a creative and innovative approach to the design of the art museum project,” said KyuJung Whang, vice president for facilities at Princeton.
Highlights of Adjaye Associates’ work include the Nobel Peace Center in Oslo, Norway, the Ethelbert Cooper Gallery of the Hutchins Center for African and African American Research at Harvard University and the Sugar Hill mixed-use social housing and museum scheme in Harlem, New York. Ongoing work includes the Ruby City art center for the Linda Pace Foundation in San Antonio, the new home for the Studio Museum in Harlem, the UK Holocaust Memorial and Learning Centre next to the Houses of Parliament in London, as well as the National Cathedral of Ghana in Accra and the headquarters of the International Finance Corporation in Dakar, Senegal.
Princeton University, 1 Nassau Hall, Princeton 08544. 609-258-3000. Christopher Eisgruber, president. www.princeton.edu.