54 artists (Jeff Koons, David Salle, Marc Jacobs, Cindy Sherman…) and many art worlders had signed a request asking Bill de Blasio, the NYC’s Mayor and Meenakshi Srinivasan, chair of the NYC Landmarks Preservation Commission to prevent the Frick’s proposed plan for expansion.
A letter was sent to the key municipal decision-makers and explaining that the expansion cannot be done. They want to protect Frick’s treasure. The proposal will totally squander the facade of the museum.
The plan intends to add 40.000 square feet but only 3.600 will be allowed to exhibitions. The rest of the ‘’possible’’ new concrete building will be designed for a coffee shop, a souvenirs store, an office, a bigger reception hall, a laboratory, a dock…
Although many things will be built, much of the heritage will be destroyed. Such as the actual reception hall, which was added onto the museum in the 1970’s, (a truly relic). It’s a shame to erase part of the Frick’s history.
Furthermore, the plan proposes to smash the entire garden, which was designed by the famous Russell Page, a landscape architect, in 1977.
The well-known motto, ‘’the bigger the better’’ is totally wrong in this case. Frick has a history, a past. The city must avoid these sorts of initiatives. We’re not kidding, the danger is real; NYC people could loose the uniqueness of this museum. Allow me to refresh your memory, and think of the MoMA’s demolition of the American Folk Art Museum. Let us act while we can! The Frick is still on his foot, it is a counter example of the capitalist mind and we want to keep it that way.
It’s not too late to raise your voice against this project. NYC’s artists understood what was at stake, for the letter is crystal clear. They specified and made it clear that Frick is a symbol, a masterwork, and a counterpoint in the urban landscape. Frick has a crazy ‘’house-museum’’ experience.
Destroying the hall and the garden just to shape the Frick’s building so he becomes like the other will change the entire experience. Art lovers and artists will not see the museum and the journey as it was. The Frick’s journey is special and very personal. It’s as if the museum was designed just for you.
In order to answer the letter, the Frick Collection explains that the old garden will be replaced by a new one, and will offer a view of Central Park. Then the plan is clearly on purpose. The Frick’s administration will do whatever it takes to carry out this plan.
Bill, if you ever get to read this, just answer a politely no, be kind, please!
Sources : http://unitetosavethefrick.org/ – http://hyperallergic.com/ – http://www.nytimes.com/