Extended Interviews: Art Institute of Chicago

BY Arts Desk  June 11, 2009 at 4:24 PM EST

The new modern wing of the Art Institute of Chicago was intended to expand one of the nation’s leading museums and provide space for its collection of modern and contemporary art. Architect Renzo Piano also conceived it as an addition in a deeper sense to a city rich in architectural tradition.

The original Beaux Art-style building, which opened in 1893, is itself a historic landmark, its famous lions a longtime city icon. The new addition, by far the largest in the museum’s history, was 10 years in the planning and building, at a cost of nearly $300 million, almost all from private donations.

Below are three extended interviews with architect Renzo Piano, Chicago Art Institute director James Cuno and Chicago Tribune architecture critic Blair Kamin.

You can also view a slide show of the Modern Wing and samples from its collection by clicking here. And additional reports on the new Modern Wing produced by local PBS station partner WTTW’s Chicago Tonight are available here.

We’ll post Thursday’s NewsHour segment in Art Beat soon.