Bruce Museum / Escav+Dumes+Ripple
Text description provided by architects. The Bruce Museum is a regional cultural institution located in Greenwich, Connecticut, with a multidisciplinary collection and exhibition program that integrates art, science, and natural history. In 2014, following a national design competition, the Bruce Museum embarked on a journey to revitalize its campus to take it into the future. Following the competition, the design team dug deep into the museum’s needs and led a rigorous initial programming study to support its ability to serve as a community resource.
The resulting project includes a comprehensive renovation of the museum’s existing 32,500-square-foot structure, a 42,000-square-foot addition, permanent and dynamic gallery space, expanded collection storage, and a new public entrance and lecture hall for the museum. . Covering three floors, the expansion doubles the area of the existing facility and creates a welcoming visitor experience with clear circulation, generous galleries and ample exhibition, storage and archive space for the museum’s growing collection.
The new design addresses visitor wayfinding, a problem of previous museum design. Prior to this expansion, the museum entrance faced north toward noisy Interstate 95, perched atop a hill and hidden from view by visitors to the site. The new design realigns the entrance to face nearby Bruce Park, giving visitors an immersive landscape experience before entering the museum. In addition, standing apart from the primary existing house, the design team worked to create a courtyard space between the two structures, which helps extend the park to the museum’s footprint to orient visitors as they move through the space.
Since its opening, the museum’s new spaces have become a catalyst for many different forms of engagement. The double-height lobby, café and gift shop blend seamlessly to create an open and independent public space. The new lecture hall has become a hub for social events, celebratory gatherings and public lectures and receptions.
New changing and permanent galleries enable the museum to host new, ambitious exhibitions and provide opportunities for engagement and education. „We can host the community in a way we haven’t been able to do before,” said Bruce Museum Executive Director Robert Wolterstorf. „In the past, we didn’t have permanent collection galleries.” By adding these spaces, the museum can display works generously donated by local collectors and inspire other collectors to do the same. .
Natural daylight was fundamental to the design concept. Openings in the facade fill the interior spaces with light, gradually diminishing in intensity as one moves into the collection galleries. Drawing inspiration from the unique geography of its site and surrounding area, the design team created a delicately linear facade of cast iron and glass inspired by the stone quarries found along the Connecticut coast. The exterior is animated by the play of light on the façade, changing the appearance dramatically as the sun crosses the sky throughout the day and the course of the year.
„Totalny pionier w sieci. Specjalista od piwa niezależny. Ewangelista popkultury. Miłośnik muzyki. Nieprzepraszający przedsiębiorca”.