New images show Renzo Piano’s Academy Museum of Motion Pictures in LA

New images have been released detailing Renzo Piano’s design for a moviemaking museum in Los Angeles, following news that project has just received a $50 million funding donation.

Currently under construction, the Academy Museum of Motion Pictures will comprise a 300,000-square-foot (27,870-square-metre) campus, in the Californian city that is home to Hollywood‘s movie studios. The building will host a collection of film memorabilia including set designs, costumes, props and interactive installations.

The project has just received a $50 million donation from philanthropists Cheryl and Haim Saban, bringing the fundraising to almost 75 per cent of its $388 million target.

“The Academy Museum will be the world’s premier institution dedicated to the art and science of movies and moviemaking,” said a statement from the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, which organises the coveted annual Oscars awards.

“[Museum director Kerry Brougher] has three essential goals: to convey the power of movies, to give viewers a look behind the scenes into how movies are made, and to explore movies’ impact on culture and our lives.”

Renzo Piano Building Workshop has worked in collaboration with local architect Zoltan Pali on the designs for the museum’s two buildings on Wilshire Boulevard.

Recent photos show the structures part way through construction, which is scheduled to complete in 2019.

The larger portion of the museum will take in the 1930s May Company Building, which is being renovated and upgraded to hold the bulk of exhibition spaces. In honour of the donation, this building will be renamed the Saban Building.

A new spherical addition will accommodate a 1,000-seat theatre and a dome-covered terrace with views of the Hollywood Hills.

Across the campus, long-term exhibitions presenting the history of movie-making will be accompanied by a programme of temporary installations dedicated to specific movies, genres or directors.

As well as the large theatre in the sphere – designed for events, premiers and presentation – a smaller 288-seat auditorium will host screenings. Restaurants, shops and education spaces will also feature.

“The millions of people around the world who make and love movies will be able to come to the epicenter of filmmaking and experience the magic of this art form,” said Academy CEO Dawn Hudson.

“They’ll see firsthand the vast collections of the academy and the work of our members. And, they’ll be able to do that all year – not just on Oscar night.”

Photograph by Joshua White

Conceptual sketches for the project were first unveiled in 2012 by Piano, who has recently completed several buildings in the US. They include the Whitney Museum of Art, and two facilities for Columbia University – all in New York.

The architect is also working on a residential skyscraper for San Francisco, a condo building in Miami Beach and an apartment tower in Manhattan.

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