An Experiment

Archive for the ‘building’ tag

Classical against Modern (The Cleveland Museum of Art)


I went to the Cleveland Museum of Art last week and was walking around outside on a nice, but chilly Saturday afternoon and noticed this shot that allowed me to contrast the two parts/styles of the building.

If you haven’t seen the building, it’s definitely an extreme contrast in styles. One part (the original building) is about as “classic” as you can get. Marble, columns, big statues, cleanly carved shrubs and trees overlooking a beautiful lake, surrounded by a park. The newer building (actually currently under MAJOR expansion) is extremely modern in style. It’s actually fairly strange looking and I can imagine that a lot of people dislike the building as it’s blocky and simply marble stripes. Nothing could be more modern in style. You simply can’t miss it.

I can’t say that I love the building but what I do like is how the design of the building mirrors what’s inside. There’s classical art and modern art and everything in between, and I couldn’t think of a better way to show that concept on the outside of the building. Each example gives you no doubt as to the message they’re trying to send (we love all types and styles of art).


As a designer, I also like their logo because it does the same thing. I simply couldn’t do a better job of taking simple shapes to describe the two looks of the building and also summing up the concept of presenting “classical” and “modern” in one clean, simple image. It’s a masterwork of logo design in my opinion.

Written by Chris Auman

March 27th, 2009 at 9:18 am