After a lengthy search and protracted negotiations filmmaker George Lucas has signed a deal with the city of Los Angeles to construct a museum of narrative art in Exposition Park. Designed by Chinese architect Ma Yansong of MAD, renders of the building, estimated to cost $1 billion to build, show a suitably sci-fi aesthetic for the institution. The 265,000 square foot building will house pieces from Lucas’ personal art collection and items from his extensive archive of Star Wars paraphernalia, memorabilia and props. There are also plans to include theatres, lecture halls, digital classrooms, shops, restaurants and a 4,200 square foot library.
Previously, sites in San Francisco and Chicago had been considered for the project, but public objections to both locations prevented any progress. The building is expected to open, unsurprisingly, on May 4 2020.
The museums board of directors issued the following statement about the agreement: “After extensive due diligence and deliberation, the board of directors of the Lucas Museum of Narrative Art is pleased to announce plans to build the museum in Exposition Park in Los Angeles. We have been humbled by the overwhelmingly positive support we received from both San Francisco and Los Angeles during our selection process. Settling on a location proved to be an extremely difficult decision precisely because of the desirability of both sites and cities.
“The board wishes to extend a special thanks to mayor Ed Lee and the San Francisco board of supervisors for their tremendous efforts and engagement. While each location offers many unique and wonderful attributes, south Los Angeles’s Promise Zone best positions the museum to have the greatest impact on the broader community, fulfilling our goal of inspiring, engaging and educating a broad and diverse visitorship. Exposition Park is a magnet for the region and accessible from all parts of the city. As a museum uniquely focused on narrative art, we look forward to becoming part of a dynamic museum community, surrounded by more than 100 elementary and high schools, one of the country’s leading universities as well as three other world-class museums.
“Now we turn our attention to finalising the details and building what we believe will be one of the most imaginative and inclusive art museums in the world—a global destination that all Angelenos and Californians will be proud to call their own.”
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