Last week the Museum of Modern Art confirmed plans -- as it expands to the west along 53rd Street in Manhattan -- to demolish the former home of the American Folk Art Museum, a much-praised 13-year old building by New York architects Tod Williams and Billie Tsien.
MoMA and its director, Glenn D. Lowry, have since been roundly criticized in the press. So has the architecture firm Diller Scofidio + Renfro, which both helped MoMA evaluate the fate of the Folk Art building and is designing the expansion.
On Wednesday afternoon I spoke by phone with Elizabeth Diller, one of the firm’s founders. We discussed the almost uniformly negative reaction to the announcement as well as the details of DS+R’s proposal for MoMA, which is still in an early design phase. What follows is an edited and condensed version of our conversation.
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