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Hammer Museum undergoing $80m transformation

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Design rendering of the transformation project for the Hammer Museum by Michael Maltzan.

The Hammer Museum at UCLA is undergoing an $80m transformation and expansion and has launched a campaign to raise $180m.

The transformation project, helmed by architect Michael Maltzan, started with the renovation of the exhibition galleries of the Hammer Museum in 2017. It will continue in phases through 2020, culminating with a dramatic new presence for the museum on Wilshire Boulevard.

Hammer Museum

The building project will add 3,700sqm of new space for the collection, exhibitions, and public programmes. It will also create 60% more gallery space and 1,850sqm of enhanced public space.

The museum will construct new corner entrance on Wilshire Boulevard, a sculpture terrace at Glendon Avenue, and a large-scale exhibition gallery on the site currently occupied by a branch of City National Bank.

Design rendering of the transformation project for the Hammer Museum by Michael Maltzan.

Construction to date includes the 2017 renovation of the museum’s third-floor exhibition spaces, now featuring a 900sqm contiguous gallery that accommodates major traveling exhibitions.

Work is currently under way to transform the courtyard-level performance space and create a dedicated gallery for new media art. Both spaces will open in June along with a redesigned café, new restaurant partner and full bar.

Design rendering of the transformation project for the Hammer Museum by Michael Maltzan.

Later this year, the Hammer will begin work to convert the grand terrace above Lindbrook Drive into a year-round space for education, installations, and events. Final construction phases, slated for 2019 and 2020, will add new galleries and will introduce a reconfigured and more welcoming public entrance and lobby

Total project costs are estimated at $80m but the Hammer plans to raise an additional $100m to expand its endowment and support its programmes and exhibitions. To date, the campaign has raised more than $130m.

Design rendering of the transformation project for the Hammer Museum by Michael Maltzan.

The announcement of the capital campaign coincides with a lead gift of $30m from Lynda and Stewart Resnick – the largest donation in the museum’s history.

Ann Philbin, director of the museum, said: “When completed, this project will allow us to exhibit more of our fast-growing collection, to showcase more artists who are pushing the boundaries of the field and to make the Hammer an even more vibrant hub for contemporary culture.”

Design rendering of the transformation project for the Hammer Museum by Michael Maltzan.

 Images: c. Michael Maltzan Architecture.

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