Old is the New New

Old is the New New

By:  Tony White I don’t know if you’re following the saga of the Folk Art Museum building in New York City. I first learned of the building and its story in an editorial on Architectural Record. I’m not sure why I find this story so intriguing.  Well, that’s not completely accurate.  It may not be this exact story that catches my attention, but I know why this type of story intrigues me. And while I’m clarifying for the sake of accuracy, my intrigue could be more accurately classified as anger. I’m getting ahead of myself.  Let me give you some background. The extremely condensed version of this story goes like this.  The Folk Art Museum building designed by Tod Williams Billie Tsien opened in 2001.  The building was sold to the Museum of Modern Art (MoMA) their next door neighbor in 2011. Earlier this year MoMA announced they had plans to demolish the building to make room for an expansion. Now in the interest of full disclosure, I just read another article on Architectural Record – MoMA has commissioned Diller Scofidio + Renfro for their expansion plan.  DS+R is looking into the feasibility of not razing the Folk Art Museum building. I guess time will tell. Back to my anger. Our society’s disregard for the past is what saddens me most.  Whether the building is a decade old or a century old or five centuries old, it seems like such a waste. If you read my last blog, you have a sense of what I’m talking about. The Rijksmuseum probably could have chosen to spend a ton less money and could have finished the project in a shorter timeframe had they chosen to build new. Rather than trashing the old to make way for new, other solutions have to be examined. Contrary to a popular phrase, newer is not always better. REDUCE, REUSE, RECYCLE.   photo via flickr.com/zokuga

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