Kimbell Art Museum will top off anniversary celebration with special symposium

Kimbell Art Museum

The Kimbell Art Museum will top off its yearlong 50th anniversary celebration Sept. 9 with a symposium focusing on structural engineer August Komendant and architect Louis I. Kahn, whose dynamic but sometimes contentious collaboration produced some of the most innovative and acclaimed buildings of the twentieth century, including the Kimbell Art Museum.

The museum’s 1972 building, designed by Kahn, is widely regarded as one of the outstanding architectural achievements of the modern era.

The 10 a.m. panel discussion, Komendant and Kahn: Engineer and Architect, will feature expert engineers, architects and art historians exploring the working relationship of Estonian-born colleagues Komendant, a pioneer of precast, prestressed, thin-shell concrete, and Kahn, renowned creator of modernist architecture with monumental forms and poetic light.

Admission is free and no reservations are required, but seating is limited. The discussion will take place in the Pavilion Auditorium and will be simulcast in the museum’s Kahn Auditorium.

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The symposium schedule follows:

  • Welcome – Eric M. Lee, director, Kimbell Art Museum.
  • Moderator and Panelist – Guy Nordenson, professor, structural engineering and architecture, School of Architecture, Princeton University, New Jersey; partner, Guy Nordenson and Associates, New York.
  • Panelist – Thomas Taylor, design director, Datum Engineers, Dallas.
  • Engineering Modern Architecture: Highlights of August Komendant’s Career – Carl-Dag Lige, junior researcher, Faculty of Architecture, Estonian Academy of Arts, Tallinn, Estonia.
  • Komendant and Kahn: Collaborative Design Innovation with Materials and Geometry – Caitlin Mueller, associate professor, department of civil and environmental engineering; associate professor, department of architecture, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Boston.
  • Kimbell in Context: Technology and Collaboration in Concrete Modernism – Tyler Sprague, associate professor, department of architecture; adjunct professor, department of civil and environmental engineering, University of Washington, Seattle.
  • Kahn and Komendant: Design in Two-Point Perspective – Shantel Blakely, assistant professor, School of Architecture, Rice University, Houston.

The Kimbell Art Museum is open Tuesdays through Thursdays and Saturdays, 10 a.m.–5 p.m.; Fridays, noon–8 p.m.; Sundays, noon–5 p.m.; closed Mondays, New Year’s Day, July 4, Thanksgiving, and Christmas. Admission to the museum’s permanent collection is always free. Special exhibition admission is $18 for adults; $16 for seniors, K–12 educators, students and military personnel; $14 for ages 6–11; free for children under 6; and $3 for Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) recipients. Admission is half-price all day on Tuesdays and after 5 p.m. on Fridays. For general information, call 817-332-8451.

Information for this article was provided by the Kimbell Art Museum.