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The Nasher Sculpture Center

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2003, Renzo Piano Building Workshop and PWP Landscape Architecture. 2001 Flora St.

This center houses Patsy and Raymond Nasher’s collection of modern sculpture. For this 2.4-acre site, Renzo Piano and Peter Walker created a building composed of parallel limestone walls covered by one of Piano’s signature diaphanous roofs of layered glass, louvers, and fabric scrims. The wall planes extend into the garden, interconnecting with hedges and allées of trees for a seamless habitat of art that links interior to exterior. Even from the sidewalk, vistas extend through the galleries and into the garden beyond. At the northern end of the garden is a secluded enclosure containing James Turrell’s Tending Blue (2003), intended as a sky-viewing oculus.

When the adjacent 42-story condominium building, Museum Tower (Johnson Fain Partners; 1918 N. Olive Street), was completed in 2013, its reflective glass curtain wall bounced strong light onto the museum roof, altering the performance of Piano’s delicately calibrated roof screen, thereby endangering the art. Its reflection also burned trees and grass, as well as Turrell’s artwork, which the artist declared destroyed. The tower, which is owned by the Dallas Police and Fire Pension System, is currently seeking mediation on solutions. Few of the units have been sold to date, and the building, doubled in height from its initial plan, complicates the financial ability of the owners to make changes.

Writing Credits

Gerald Moorhead et al.


What's Nearby


Gerald Moorhead et al., "The Nasher Sculpture Center", [Dallas, Texas], SAH Archipedia, eds. Gabrielle Esperdy and Karen Kingsley, Charlottesville: UVaP, 2012—,

Print Source

Buildings of Texas

Buildings of Texas: East, North Central, Panhandle and South Plains, and West, Gerald Moorhead and contributors. Charlottesville: University of Virginia Press, 2019, 155-156.

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