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MOCA director to restore “luminosity” to Isozaki-designed museum

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MOCA rendering. Rendering courtesy of Arata Isozaki and Associates.

The Pritzker Prize for 2019 has been awarded to Arata Isozaki, the 87-year-old Japanese architect with a career ranging from brutalist libraries to an inflatable purple concert hall. His most famous building is LA’s MOCA, or Museum of Contemporary Art, on Grand Avenue. However, the 1986 structure has never been a huge hit with the public.

But MOCA’s new director Klaus Biesenbach sees poetry in the design -- likening the complex to a “sunken pool” -- and promises to restore its “luminosity,” bring greenery to its arid plaza and, maybe, add a reflective water feature in the subterranean entry area.

He tells DnA about his restoration plans that would honor Isozaki’s original design.