The Art Begins At the Building Entrance

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Upon arrival at an art museum, it’s important to set the stage for a mindful and emotional experience.

That is the goal of any piece of art and the responsibility of the Brooklyn Museum of Art (also known as the Brooklyn Museum).  The experience must be achieved at every level, from start to finish.At the Brooklyn Museum, burgeoning artists and visitors alike can explore an extensive and comprehensive permanent collection that includes ancient Egyptian masterpieces, African art, European paintings, decorative arts, period rooms, and contemporary art.They will also experience intelligent, cutting-edge exhibitions and programs that reflect a fresh perspective on traditional and historical works.

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Dedicated to the visitor experience, committed to excellence in every aspect of its collections and programs, and drawing on both new and traditional tools of communication, interpretation, and presentation, the Museum aims to serve its diverse public as a dynamic, innovative center for learning through the visual arts. The building’s architecture must be just as discerning and engaging as the pieces inside to keep up with its mission.

Redesigned in 2004 by Polshek Partnership Architects (now Ennead Architects), this modern, elegant space features an expansive, sheer glass pavilion that overlooks a welcoming public plaza.  The brick pier entrances, dividing the pavilion and adjacent lobby enclosed within, are the same bricks that once framed five large front doors.  They have been fully excavated, restored, and permanently exposed in the space.  

This grand pavilion artfully melds the historical and contemporary components of the building to emulate and pay homage to the original grand staircase previously leading up to the former main entrance of the Beaux-Arts style facade.  When looking to give the new Museum entrance a revitalized yet progressive, transparent look, Polshek relied upon W&W Glass for structural glass engineering and installation support.

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With their past experiences with museum institutions like the American Museum of Natural History (also by Polshek Partnership Architects), the expert designers and glaziers at W&W Glass used a custom Pilkington Planar™ structural glass system to achieve the architect’s vision.  For the vertical walls and step-like roof glass, the product chosen was clear SentryGlas® interlayer laminated glass.

The roof glass included a white dot frit pattern on the second surface to help provide better shading for occupants, while allowing comfortable visibility to the sky above. The enclosure design featured a mixture of hardware, including: Pilkington Planar™ 902 fittings, spider castings, stainless steel stanchions, and stainless steel tension trusses spanning between three-coat epoxy painted steel plate beam rafters.  All elements were chosen for their precision, crafted with the same care as the artwork found inside.

Year after year, W&W Glass has earned the trust of the leading architects and institutions, not only in New York, but throughout North America through their supply and installation of complex projects like this.

W&W Glass LLC is a family owned business with a 70-year history in the metal and glass industry, one of the largest metal and glass companies in the New York metropolitan area and the largest supplier of structural glass systems in the country. We have over two decades of experience in the design and installation of various building enclosure systems, including stick-built curtain walls, pre-glazed unitized curtain walls, Pilkington Planar™ structural glass facades, and custom metal and glass enclosure systems. We install all of our work with our own dedicated union labor force. W&W is consistently the largest employer of glaziers in the NY metropolitan area.

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