The EMP Museum
Exterior of the EMP Museum
Location--Seattle Center adjacent to the Space Needle
INDEX OF EMP INFORMATION
This fascinating place is really several things rolled into one giant package:
- An amazing work of architecture with a dazzling exterior
- An equally stunning interior
- A rock music museum
- A science fiction museum
- A spectacular place for photography buffs
Architect: Frank O. Gehry
Building completion: 2000
Major renovation: 2004
The most unusual building in Seattle and one of the most interesting structures anywhere is the EMP building. It can't be ignored or missed if you are walking around Seattle Center. Is it Playdough on steroids, a dream of Salvadore Dali, an architect's nightmare, or just fantasy? You may not be able to answer this question even after you have spent many visits looking at the structure.
You will probably either love or hate the structure. As you look at its exterior and its equally wild interior, you understand that the museum fits in well with the free flowing nature of rock music. It looks like a building that Jimi Hendrix would have designed.
The real architect was Frank Gehry, the famous celebrity designer of ultramodern buildings such as the gorgeous Guggenheim Museum in Spain and the Walt Disney Concert Hall in Los Angeles. Gehry designed the EMP structure without a single straight line on the exterior. The exterior consists of 21,000 unique aluminum and stainless steel shingles. The shingles are attached to 9,000 panels. The shingles are painted red, blue, silver, gold, and metallic purple. The building has a footprint of 35,000 square feet and contains 140,000 square feet of interior space.
I personally think that the exterior of the building is amazing. Being a photographer, I am drawn to the beautiful metal curves that swoop and swirl in front of the viewer and constantly change hue and color with the passing of the day and changing sunlight. One of my favorite photographic experiences in Seattle is to spend a while with my camera capturing the elegance and undulations of the museum's curves. My favorite side of the building is on Broad Street where the sparkling gold panels intermingle with the monorail track structure and the entrance to the building.
The interior of the building is as striking as the exterior and perhaps outshines the exterior. The undulating walls and ceiling in this structure are a work of art in their own right. A photographer can spend quite a while walking around and making shots of the myriad curves displaying a wild variety of colors and shades. The entire interior is a work of art.
Interior View of the Lobby
Interior View of the Lobby