By CAROL VOGEL in NYTimes
THERE have been many strange sightings outside the Whitney Museum of American Art’s Marcel Breuer building over the years: a giant bird’s nest precariously perched on the cantilevered entrance; a neon sign that spelled out “Negro Sunshine”; and a giant replica of a toy fire truck parked at the curb for nearly three months, to name a few. So it is hardly surprising that recent passers-by don’t seem at all curious at the sight of tall black shipping containers rising from the sculpture court…..
“The big movement right now is experiential learning,” said Kathryn Potts, an associate director who is chairwoman of the Whitney’s education department. “And what museums offer is a unique experience you can’t get anywhere else: of being in galleries, meeting artists and understanding their world.”
At the Whitney, the pop-up center is an inventive solution to a space problem. When the museum sold its neighboring brownstones last year, with them went the space where some education programs were held.
Desperate for a solution, the museum called upon LOT-EK, the Manhattan architects known for their innovative use of recycled materials, to create a place where people of all ages could participate in classes, art-making workshops, studio demonstrations and other educational endeavors. The design calls for a diagonal, continuous band of glass running along two sides and across the roof, allowing visitors to watch what’s going on inside….