International firm OMA submitted a design for the proposed Lucas Museum of Narrative Art in Chicago. Though the project has fallen through (Michael Sorkin wants to keep it in Chicago, but move it farther South), and the museum was to be designed by New York studio MAD Architects, the original OMA proposal has now been released.
The Lucas Museum aimed to showcase the the art of storytelling though various collections including digital art, multi-media displays, and illustrations, all alongside educational programs. Opposition from public advocacy group Friends of the Parks stopped the museum’s realization; now Lucas will try to bring his proposal back to California, according to the Chicago Tribune.
OMA’s submission, led by New York-based partner Shohei Shigematsu, made use of an ETFE (Ethylene tetrafluoroethylene) skin that formed pillows, wrapping around the building in a dome-like fashion. The fluorine-based polymer would aid the creation of an atrium and sky park that would make way for vertical gallery spaces.
Light would permeate through the membrane while the structure would take on an easily identifiable form. In articulating the gallery space in such a way, space underneath could also be used for a new urban park that would amplify the building’s blurring of open and closed spaces.
In addition to this, the building would also house a theater and a series of lecture halls that would be accommodated at the base of the building. Aside from letting light in, the building’s ETFE skin would also serve as a canvas for projections, turning the park below into an outdoor cinema.