Saturday, September 20, 2008

Breaking the traditional boundaries

Here is a relic from when I was in Toronto - I wrote it, but never posted it.

The Royal Ontario Museum has had a facelift since the last time I was there. The Micheal Lee-Chin Crystal was completed just over a year ago on June 1st 2007. It is this stunning cubic feature that juts out of the old structure. Within the cubes are bold lines streching ones sightlines outwards, while the repetitive metal siding brings the eye to back to the entrances down at ground level. As you all know with my black and white fetish, I love stark contracts, and this has it in spades. There's contrast between the old and the new forms - one stable square, one unstable diamond, one made of dull material, the other shiny and bright, one traditional, the other modern and one following the street line, the other breaking all conventions of street profile. Within the new structure there is contrast too... between the light, unpolished metal, and the high intensity black and reflective windows.... oh my list could go on and on and on! Some have critizised the Crystal for not following traditional Toronto architecture, and therefore not reflecting the environment in which it is in, nor the poeple who support museum, it is afterall called the Royal Ontario Museum... What do you think? Is the new addition amazing or out of place, or both?

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