This 20,000-sf museum replaces a 6,000-sf facility sited amidst a complex of performing arts classrooms, theaters, and a library on Northwestern University’s Evanston campus, adjacent to the shores of Lake Michigan. Because of the tight space between the buildings, the main exhibition areas are elevated above a plaza, while support spaces on two levels occupy the footprint of the previous building. An auditorium and administrative offices are included in the structure, in addition to the galleries.

A transparent entrance pavilion, providing views of Lake Michigan, houses a glass elevator and a monumental stair. The north and south walls of the galleries are enclosed with a taut glass and metal curtain wall. A plane of drywall suspended from the inner face of the curtain wall is held away from the floor and the ceiling to allow natural light into the space without damaging the artwork.

Architect and Interior Designer: Lohan Associates

Civic Block Museum 5
Civic Block Museum 7