museum design-Museum of Science and Industry-Henry Crown Space Center

Chicago’s Museum of Science and Industry’s Henry Crown Space Center is a renewal project that I designed over the winter of 2006
and spring of 2007 -the final product installed summer of 2007.The space is quite large, 15,000 square feet, and had originally been
executed as, more or less, a single, large open area. The gallery housed many full sized capsules, satellites, a space shuttle themed
theater, etc.. The theming was also very dark-black ceiling and wall sand dark carpet etc.. The intent of the original treatment was, clearly, to elicit the feeling of being in “space” . Unfortunately, the actual effect wound up being  that of an enormous dark chasm that dwarfed the museum’s world class artifacts-making even 16’ long capsules seem diminutive and unimpressive. My approach, therefore, was to subdivide the area using simple, elegant walls, scaled appropriately to the space, and with organic curves to soften the hardness of the very industrial content. The outcome was the creation of several smaller, more intimate, patron-friendly galleries. These served as colorful backdrops for the large artifacts, which were now framed in environments which suitably showcased and emphasized their
impressive size.

Some of the design roughs, and presentation plates, exploring options for the space-


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