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Oakland Museum of California Announces Publication of ‘A Gift of Architecture 2’


MEDIA PLEASE NOTE: Due to a printing error, the release of the Oakland Museum of California Architecture Council’s publication of A Gift of Architecture 2 has been postponed until later in the summer at a date to be announced. As a result, the June 29 book signing event has also been postponed until publication.

The architecture tours of OMCA each Sunday in June will take place as planned. 

The original news release may be found below for your reference:

(OAKLAND, CA)—A significantly expanded and updated edition of The Oakland Museum: A Gift of Architecture, the 1989 publication celebrating the Oakland Museum of California (OMCA) as an iconic landmark of mid-century modern architecture designed by Kevin Roche—will be released by the Museum on May 30, 2014. When the Oakland Museum of California building opened in 1969, it was hailed internationally as an important and radically progressive, contemporary structure designed as a museum of the people that integrated indoor and outdoor spaces and welcomed the public to the Museum’s collections of art, history, and natural sciences. When the Museum was transformed in 2010, these inherent characteristics were sensitively preserved and updated by Mark Cavagnero and Associates, launching OMCA into a new era of public engagement and interactivity. A Gift of Architecture 2 is a significant addition to literature about architecture, mid-century modernism, and museums, and eloquently updates the long out-of-print 1st edition. The publication is priced at $19.95 and will be available at the OMCA Store and online at beginning May 29, 2014.

A Gift of Architecture 2, published by the OMCA Council on Architecture, is an innovative 56-page book that includes the publication’s original 32-page text and photographic content documenting the original 1969 building plus new photos of the Museum’s widely covered 2010 transformation by Bay Area Architect Mark Cavagnero and Associates. At the center of the book is an accordion fold-out leporello with original black-and-white documentary photographs of the Museum on one side and new color photos of the 2010 transformation on the reverse. The publication includes new essays by Cavagnero , San Francisco Chronicle architecture critic John King, and Andre Ptaszynski, Principal at Jensen/Ptaszynski Architects, a foreword by OMCA Director and CEO Lori Fogarty, and design by Jean Sanchirico.

The OMCA Council on Architecture offers free tours of the Museum’s grounds on the first Sunday of every month, and will offer tours every Sunday during the month of June, culminating with a public book signing in the OMCA Store on June 29.

Excerpt from A Gift of Architecture 2

From Architect Mark Cavagnero’s essay: “The design of the Oakland Museum of California was consistent with the ethos of its time in challenging a doctrinaire approach to urbanism.

“Until the period of the 1960s, museums had essentially remained monumental in their response to civic scale and community importance. Imposing facades, oversized front doors and grand spaces at the entry for identity, orientation and events, such elements informed you that you were entering a palace of culture. Kevin Roche’s design was different, it was anti-monumental, it expressed community in every aspect, and it had numerous points of entry, none more important than the others.

“Without hierarchy or symbols of authority and control, the Oakland Museum of California simply opened itself up in a porous and intellectually accessible way.”