There’s no denying that, ever since the move into its new Herzog & de Meuron designed building in Water Mill, the art world—and indeed the whole world—has been taking the Parrish Art Museum more seriously.
And now, the most recent confirmation of the museum’s elevated stature in the international art world comes from Travel + Leisure’s tenth annual design competition, with the 2014 jurors crowning the Parrish “Best Museum.”
The museum—the only winner from the United States—was featured in the February issue of Travel + Leisure.
To provide some context, it should be noted that the Honorable Mention in the Best Museum category went to Musée Louvre-Lens, the Paris Louvre’s newest satellite museum in the former coal-mining town of Lens, France, designed by Kazuyo Sejimam and Ryue Nishizawa/SANAA. www.louvrelens.fr
Parrish Museum Director Terrie Sultan accepted the award at a presentation ceremony on January 30 at Toro restaurant in New York. The event included a video commentary on each of the winners by the competition jurors, as well as short presentations by Nancy Novogrod, Travel + Leisure’s Editor-in-Chief, and Thomas Pritzker, executive chairman of Hyatt Hotels Corporation and supporter of the renowned Pritzker Architecture Prize.
A six-member jury of distinguished design professionals chosen by Travel + Leisure were tasked with choosing “the best new examples of design.” According to the website, “Many of this year’s favorites will come as no surprise, including the Herzog & de Meuron-designed Parrish Art Museum.” www.travelandleisure.com/articles/tl-design-awards-2014
Describing the museum as “brave enough to be humble” in the “land of riches that is the East End of Long Island,” the awards announcement went on to say:
“Harking back to the agricultural structures that once dominated the landscape, the museum’s shape evokes that of a barn, if an extraordinarily long, twin-gabled, and finely detailed one. The line it draws in an open meadow is striking in its simplicity; inside, the central corridor is flanked by galleries, while a wide, covered terrace at one end extends a friendly invitation to step into a world of American art.”
Sultan responded to being chosen for the award by stating, “We are thrilled to be recognized by this prestigious award, and proud of our museum and the wonderful architecture that was truly ‘purpose built’ in such a way as to fully integrate the mission and core values of the institution and the special nature of our environment. Art, architecture and nature are holistically integrated to provide an experience not to be had elsewhere."
The 34,400-square-foot building in Water Mill, New York was the first art museum built on the East End of Long Island in more than a century and the cultural centerpiece and most recognizable architectural landmark in the region. The new building provides 12,200 square feet of pristine and flexible gallery space, much of which is dedicated to installations of the museum’s permanent collection, which includes nearly 3,000 works from the 19th century to the present.
The design of the new Museum, which opened in November 2012, references the vernacular architecture of the East End to emphasize the relationship of art to nature, and to be flexible and welcoming. Herzog & de Meuron principal Jacques Herzog said, “Our design … is a reinterpretation of … the traditional house form.”
Ascan Mergenthaler, Senior Partner, added, “The starting point was the artist’s studio in the East End of Long Island. Visitors will be able to appreciate the works in the kind of light most artists prefer.”
The Travel + Leisure jury, moderated by Chee Pearlman, contributing design editor of Travel + Leisure , included Kathy Halbreich, Associate Director, Museum of Modern Art; Mary Margaret Jones, Senior Principal and President, Hargreaves Associates landscape architects; Thom Browne, Designer, Thom Browne New York; Ilse Crawford, Founder, Studioilse interior design; Morris Adjmi, Principal, Morris Adjmi Architects; and Jerome Griffith, President and CEO, Tumi.
The Parrish Art Museum is the oldest cultural institution on the East End of Long Island, and is dedicated to the collection, preservation, interpretation, and dissemination of art from the 19th century to the present, with a particular focus on honoring the rich creative legacy of the East End, celebrating the region’s enduring heritage as a vibrant art colony, and telling the story of our area and its national—even global—impact on the world of art.
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