- Project Name
- Orange County Museum of Art
- Morphosis Architects
- Orange County Museum of Art
- Project Types
- Project Scope
- New Construction
- 52,000 sq. feet
- Shared by
- Project Status
- On the Boards/In Progress
This project won an honorable mention in the 2019 Progressive Architecture Awards
“This Museum zooms in on the impact of art and architecture acting together. The design shows an evolution of the box, and it deflects to an important piece of artwork and to public space, rather than placing the art after the fact.” —Claire Weisz, FAIA
Morphosis Architects’ design for the new Orange County Museum of Art marks a significant moment both for Southern California and for one of the region’s most celebrated firms. The town of Costa Mesa has effectively promoted itself as the de facto cultural capital of Los Angeles’ sprawling southern suburbs, thanks chiefly to the Segerstrom Center for the Arts, a massive campus of performance venues and public spaces (including those designed by Charles Lawrence and Cesar Pelli, FAIA) which will play host to the new museum.
Complementing and responding to the existing facilities on-site, Morphosis’ scheme is a robustly urban ensemble with a large block topped by a flowing, irregular mass. Approaching by way of an at-grade plaza punctuated by a towering sculpture by Richard Serra, visitors enter to find a wide variety of different exhibition environments—intimate smaller galleries, larger spaces that can be reconfigured as curators require, and a vast rooftop terrace playing host to large-scale sculptural works. At the far end of the terrace is a sweeping staircase looking over the entryway (shown at left and above); intended as a lounging and meeting place, it promises to become a focal point for the whole complex. Additional space for offices, educational programming, a museum shop, and a cafeteria are located in the slender volume that snakes around the terrace, with a glassed-in atrium that looms grandly over the outdoor stairway connecting it to the main exhibition space below.
Bristling with functionality and emphatic in expression, the building is one component of a much larger plan to reinvent Costa Mesa as a regional destination, a new kind of suburban city with increased density and a stronger sense of civic identity. For Morphosis, long the exponents of a brash brand of L.A. futurism, the project is a chance to shape the identity of the Californian megalopolis in the 21st century, while also showing their singular knack for shaping the encounter with art.
Project: Orange County Museum of Art, Costa Mesa, Calif.
Client: Orange County Museum of Art
Architect: Morphosis Architects, Culver City, Calif. . Thom Mayne, FAIA (design director); Brandon Welling (project principal); Aaron Ragan, Crystal Wang (project architects); Tom Day, Daniel Pruske (project designers); Ilaria Campi, Salvador Hidalgo, Zach Pauls, Stan Su, AIA, Natalia Traverso Caruana (project team); Cory Brugger, Assoc. AIA, Joseph D’Oria, Kerenza Harris, Atsushi Sugiuchi (advanced technology); Lily Bakhshi Sheppard, Stanley Cho, AIA, Val Fan, Colleen Fellows, Fredy Gomez, Mauricio Gomez, Marie Goodstein, Austin Griffis, Maria Herrero, Ibrahim Ibrahim, Eric Meyer, Nicole Meyer, Elizabeth Miller, Samuel Naylor, Rory Noble-Turner, Liana Nourafshan, Assoc. AIA, Colton Stevenson, Patrick Witthaus, Assoc. AIA (project assistants); Carolyn Ng, Jasmine Park (visualization)
Structural Engineer: John A. Martin & Associates
M/E/P Engineer: BuroHappold Engineering
Civil Engineer: KPFF Consulting Engineers
Landscape Architect: OJB Landscape Architecture
Lighting Designer: Horton Lees Brogden Lighting Design
Signage/Graphics: Follis Design Acoustics: Newson Brown
Acoustics Audiovisual/IT: Waveguide
Façade: Walter P. Moore C
ode/Life Safety: Simpson Gumpertz & Heger
Specifications: Construction Specifications
Cost Estimator: Dharam Consulting
Size: 52,000 square feet
Cost: $55 million