Design: Beautiful Buildings from the Chicago-Beijing Lucas Museum Team

Beijing-based MAD Architects and Chicago's Studio Gang were chosen to partner on the design for the George Lucas Museum for an irresistible creative coupling.

Photo via Mad Architects Exterior of the Ordos Museum in the new city of Ordos, China. According to the builders, this area was once nothing but Gobi desert and the striking polished metal seems to erupt as a natural element in the landscape. The MAD team envisioned it as a new public space. 

It's happened and it's real. After a global search, a contentious West Coast-Third Coast battle for the proposed $1 billion project, Chicago captured the prestigious Lucas Museum of Narrative Art -- the "Star War"s museum --  and the design team is an inspired choice.

Ma Yansong's  Beijing-based MAD Architects and Jeanne Gang's  Studio Gang Architects courted and won, with MAD acting as principal designers (beating out runner-up UNStudio of Amsterdam) and the Gang teaming up to lead execution and implementation.  The design concept will be rendered as a digital sculpture, said Michael Toolis, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, VOA Associates, responsible for delivering these digital blueprints of Ma's ideas. "Each aspect of the museum will be digitally created using technology that enables us to test daylight, create interactive models and examine how the design performs in different environments,” he said.  The models are scheduled to be completed sometime later this year.

Ma calls the commission a "gift." As a graduate of Yale School of Architecture, he has the kind of Ivy League cred that turns heads and his team has propelled some of the most critical and innovative design concepts, from a sculpture museum, the Absolute Towers in Ontario, Canada, Chaoyang Park Plaza in Beijing, China and a startling building-as-travelling-show that resembles an explosion frozen in time. Ma says he's going to conjure up a "timeless design."  

Jeanne Gang, the woman who brought the landmark Shoreland Hotel back to life and was recently given love taps in the May issue of The New Yorker in Amy Waldman's piece The Urban Wild: An Architect's Vision for a New Kind of Aquariumwill lead  LMNA's landscape design, and, specifically, the bridge to connect the museum to Northerly Island.

Take a look at the digital picture-book of buildings from the new team. 

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