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Old Posted Dec 19, 2016, 12:19 AM
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Best placement for a proper modern art museum in Austin??

Any ideas? Will we ever even get a big city museum??
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Old Posted Dec 20, 2016, 12:03 AM
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Originally Posted by ahealy View Post
Any ideas? Will we ever even get a big city museum??
I dream of a proper museum designed by a world class architect at the Statesman location. Walk through the park/boardwalk, around the water, check out the newest exhibits, grab a bite downtown or on Congress...

It's just the perfect site IMO. And we need a real museum BADLY.
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Old Posted Dec 20, 2016, 12:21 AM
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Originally Posted by futures View Post
I dream of a proper museum designed by a world class architect at the Statesman location. Walk through the park/boardwalk, around the water, check out the newest exhibits, grab a bite downtown or on Congress...

It's just the perfect site IMO. And we need a real museum BADLY.
We need a significant number of very well heeled local art patrons and collectors who will give money for a building campaign and to create an endowment that can be used to obtain world class art. If we had serious local collectors in abundance, there is a very good chance that some or all of their collections might end up in local museums. Probably some of the best 20th Century art to be found in Austin comes from the James Michener collection. It was just serendipity that caused Michener to spend his final years in the area, and a big chunk of his art collection ended up here at the Blanton. Austin is mostly about new money, mostly tech money. I am not sure that there are a lot of serious collectors putting together well curated collections from within that crowd. I hope I am wrong because Austin has now become large enough that the lack of a really first rate art museum is viewed by many as a major deficit.
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Old Posted Dec 20, 2016, 1:24 AM
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I agree with futures's suggestion, and I agree with austlar 1's assessment. The more Austin continues to be recognized as a large world class city, the more amplified its shortcomings will be, ie; one of the dozen largest city in the US without...(place what's important or obviously missing, here.)
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Old Posted Dec 20, 2016, 1:48 AM
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I can agree with an art museum as the crown jewel of the south shore district would be brilliant placement and planning.

However, I still hope for a planetarium/Texas natural history museum on the block across Congress from the Bullock state history museum. It would give us a true museum district sandwiched between the Texas Capitol and UT Campus.

(and then I dream of a 'Museum District' subway stop)
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Old Posted Dec 20, 2016, 12:34 PM
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My first thought is also Congress/MLK area...it'd be convenient to have a sort of district there. I love the south shore idea, but I just want the other museums nearby.
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Old Posted Dec 20, 2016, 2:41 PM
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If it's any sort of marquee building, South Shore seems the obvious choice. Proximity to the center of the city, as well as some connectivity to the Palmer Center/Long Center/Auditorium Shores. Though I do like the idea of building an actual district out of them between the capital and UT.
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Old Posted Dec 20, 2016, 3:23 PM
atxsnail atxsnail is offline
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Originally Posted by Maximusx1 View Post
I can agree with an art museum as the crown jewel of the south shore district would be brilliant placement and planning.

However, I still hope for a planetarium/Texas natural history museum on the block across Congress from the Bullock state history museum. It would give us a true museum district sandwiched between the Texas Capitol and UT Campus.

(and then I dream of a 'Museum District' subway stop)
Yeah that planned planetarium would have been a great addition there. However I think that particular spot is now spoken for with the planned redesign/expansion of the area north of the Capitol.
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Old Posted Dec 20, 2016, 11:11 PM
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I love all of these ideas .....Especially a drive to jumpstart a specific "Museum District". I have always imagined that district to exist near UT/Blanton/Contemporary. Wouldn't it be amazing if a dead block near the capital was razed for that? Mixed-use even
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Old Posted Dec 25, 2016, 9:16 PM
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I am among those who argue for a cohesive museum district, and we already have the beginnings of that at MLK and North Congress. Given that this area is also going to be the terminus of the eventual pedestrian mall, it's perfect.

http://www.tfc.state.tx.us/divisions...onadmin/tools/
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  #11  
Old Posted Jan 2, 2017, 3:17 AM
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I vote for anywhere south of the river
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  #12  
Old Posted Jan 5, 2017, 6:36 AM
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Anne Walton just donated $20 million to the Amon Carter Museum in Fort Worth to bulk up their endowment. Big money up there regularly coughs up serious dough for the THREE very good local art museums. That is the kind of philanthropic environment needed to produce a serious art museum. It is not enough to build a sexy building unless you have a decent collection to put in the building and the funds (and generous art collecting patrons) to continue building a collection. Austin is so behind the curve. I doubt we'll ever really catch up with Houston, Dallas, or FW in this regard.
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Old Posted Jan 5, 2017, 3:40 PM
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Anne Walton just donated $20 million to the Amon Carter Museum in Fort Worth to bulk up their endowment. Big money up there regularly coughs up serious dough for the THREE very good local art museums. That is the kind of philanthropic environment needed to produce a serious art museum. It is not enough to build a sexy building unless you have a decent collection to put in the building and the funds (and generous art collecting patrons) to continue building a collection. Austin is so behind the curve. I doubt we'll ever really catch up with Houston, Dallas, or FW in this regard.
I've said this for yeas. All the bigger/older cities have huge mega rich families that contribute giant fortunes to their arts, etc. I think Dell/Topher/Dejoria and people like that will step it up, but probably more after they retire and seek to give back to Austin.

I was born in Pittsburgh, and the age of the city and the history of the Mellons/Carnegie/Hillmans philanthropic endeavors is legendary and ongoing. Hard to match that when our city was so small just 50 years ago. (less than 200,000 pop). Austin gets a TON of philanthropic money-but it mostly goes to UT.

I think "patrons of the arts" are very underappreciated/underrepresented in Austin.....I wish it wasn't that way. We are still a BIG college town.

I know that I plan to give back one day. This town means the world to me. Its given me all the opportunities I could have ever asked for. Don't know if that could have happened in NYC, or LA...etc.
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  #14  
Old Posted Jan 5, 2017, 10:52 PM
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It's sad considering that we're supposedly an art city, that we don't have big league cultural amenities.
  • What type of museum would I support on the south shore? There is no Museum of Live Music anywhere in the world, and Austin is an obvious choice and that particular area is an obvious choice as well, being located in close proximity to all of our major live music festival areas and live music venue areas. You could SO incorporate a dozen or so venues into the museum for different size concerts that could actually be used throughout the year as an income anchor for the museum. This idea makes financial sense.
  • We obviously need an art museum, and that's been covered at length above. I'm not sure where Austin's art "niche" is, but smaller cities often need to find niches in these types of museums. The Blanton, actually, is decent, and should probably just be expanded in terms of their endowment and collection. I.E. Build on what we already have.
  • I'd love for Austin to also have a downtown planetarium. Others above have mentioned that as well, and I concur with them.
  • We should definitely have a real aquarium and an expanded zoo. I get that the Texas State Aquarium is in Corpus, but Houston, Dallas, and Fort Worth all have top level in this area and so should Austin.
  • Sports team. This has been covered elsewhere. I hope we get both a MLB and MLS team over time as the metro area grows, unless San Antonio gets an MLS team, in which case our hopes are squarely on MLB or if hockey, cricket, or rugby somehow become more popular in the states.
  • Don't forget that we've also got a decent symphony and a wonderful ballet, so we already have stuff that's good, but they could always be better, too.
  • A world-class downtown park. We don't have that, yet. We've got two potential options: capping I-35 and turning Congress in between the Capitol and UT into a pedestrian promenade. As a side note, those wooden pocket parks they've been doing to some of the parking spaces on Congress should be done on every single parking space along Congress. It'd create a cohesive district feeling, and it isn't like the area needs that meager number of parking spaces anymore anyway to thrive.
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  #15  
Old Posted Jan 5, 2017, 11:25 PM
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Originally Posted by wwmiv View Post
It's sad considering that we're supposedly an art city, that we don't have big league cultural amenities.
  • What type of museum would I support on the south shore? There is no Museum of Live Music anywhere in the world, and Austin is an obvious choice and that particular area is an obvious choice as well, being located in close proximity to all of our major live music festival areas and live music venue areas. You could SO incorporate a dozen or so venues into the museum for different size concerts that could actually be used throughout the year as an income anchor for the museum. This idea makes financial sense.
  • We obviously need an art museum, and that's been covered at length above. I'm not sure where Austin's art "niche" is, but smaller cities often need to find niches in these types of museums. The Blanton, actually, is decent, and should probably just be expanded in terms of their endowment and collection. I.E. Build on what we already have.
  • I'd love for Austin to also have a downtown planetarium. Others above have mentioned that as well, and I concur with them.
  • We should definitely have a real aquarium and an expanded zoo. I get that the Texas State Aquarium is in Corpus, but Houston, Dallas, and Fort Worth all have top level in this area and so should Austin.
  • Sports team. This has been covered elsewhere. I hope we get both a MLB and MLS team over time as the metro area grows, unless San Antonio gets an MLS team, in which case our hopes are squarely on MLB or if hockey, cricket, or rugby somehow become more popular in the states.
  • Don't forget that we've also got a decent symphony and a wonderful ballet, so we already have stuff that's good, but they could always be better, too.
  • A world-class downtown park. We don't have that, yet. We've got two potential options: capping I-35 and turning Congress in between the Capitol and UT into a pedestrian promenade. As a side note, those wooden pocket parks they've been doing to some of the parking spaces on Congress should be done on every single parking space along Congress. It'd create a cohesive district feeling, and it isn't like the area needs that meager number of parking spaces anymore anyway to thrive.
With regards to a world class park, I think Zilker and the parks along Lady Bird Lake could easily evolve into something splendid. Unless you are a big fan of running and biking, this park system currently offers few amenities (Well, Barton Springs is pretty cool, and the botanical garden is OK enough maybe). My biggest single complaint is the almost complete absence of comfortable park benches lining the walkways and trails in these parks. I know the city worries about homeless people setting up shop on park benches, but to my mind the mark of a civilized city is a park where large numbers of people congregate to sit on park benches to read, relax, visit with friends, or just watch the world go by. A few scattered picnic tables and a stray park bench or two just does not get the job done. Zilker Park would be so much nicer with lots of benches. A nice permanent Merry Go Round and Ferris Wheel would be something special too. Also, it might be time to ditch the Trail of Lights and cut down on major special events in Zilker. It is not a large park, and when these things take place, the park is kind of lost to regular citizens who just want to get away and relax. Zilker should be Austin's living room, not the rumpus room.

Here is a link to some lovely park benches in NYC
http://www.google.com/search?q=park+...84OGUw1T5RM%3A
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Old Posted Jan 5, 2017, 11:53 PM
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With regards to a world class park, I think Zilker and the parks along Lady Bird Lake could easily evolve into something splendid. Unless you are a big fan of running and biking, this park system currently offers few amenities (Well, Barton Springs is pretty cool, and the botanical garden is OK enough maybe). My biggest single complaint is the almost complete absence of comfortable park benches lining the walkways and trails in these parks. I know the city worries about homeless people setting up shop on park benches, but to my mind the mark of a civilized city is a park where large numbers of people congregate to sit on park benches to read, relax, visit with friends, or just watch the world go by. A few scattered picnic tables and a stray park bench or two just does not get the job done. Zilker Park would be so much nicer with lots of benches. A nice permanent Merry Go Round and Ferris Wheel would be something special too. Also, it might be time to ditch the Trail of Lights and cut down on major special events in Zilker. It is not a large park, and when these things take place, the park is kind of lost to regular citizens who just want to get away and relax. Zilker should be Austin's living room, not the rumpus room.
Our chance at a world class park lies with the Waller Creek vision https://www.wallercreek.org/
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Old Posted Jan 6, 2017, 12:04 AM
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Originally Posted by wwmiv View Post
It's sad considering that we're supposedly an art city, that we don't have big league cultural amenities.
  • What type of museum would I support on the south shore? There is no Museum of Live Music anywhere in the world, and Austin is an obvious choice and that particular area is an obvious choice as well, being located in close proximity to all of our major live music festival areas and live music venue areas. You could SO incorporate a dozen or so venues into the museum for different size concerts that could actually be used throughout the year as an income anchor for the museum. This idea makes financial sense.

    I like it!

  • We obviously need an art museum, and that's been covered at length above. I'm not sure where Austin's art "niche" is, but smaller cities often need to find niches in these types of museums. The Blanton, actually, is decent, and should probably just be expanded in terms of their endowment and collection. I.E. Build on what we already have.

    I'm not dying for an art museum, but I can understand their draw.

  • I'd love for Austin to also have a downtown planetarium. Others above have mentioned that as well, and I concur with them.

    Would love one of these as well.

  • We should definitely have a real aquarium and an expanded zoo. I get that the Texas State Aquarium is in Corpus, but Houston, Dallas, and Fort Worth all have top level in this area and so should Austin.

    Yes!

  • Sports team. This has been covered elsewhere. I hope we get both a MLB and MLS team over time as the metro area grows, unless San Antonio gets an MLS team, in which case our hopes are squarely on MLB or if hockey, cricket, or rugby somehow become more popular in the states.

    I don't really care about this. I will always be a Texas Rangers fan, so having an Austin team is not high on my wish list. I don't watch soccer, so MLS doesn't matter to me.

  • Don't forget that we've also got a decent symphony and a wonderful ballet, so we already have stuff that's good, but they could always be better, too.

    Another couple of things that are like art museums to me.

  • A world-class downtown park. We don't have that, yet. We've got two potential options: capping I-35 and turning Congress in between the Capitol and UT into a pedestrian promenade. As a side note, those wooden pocket parks they've been doing to some of the parking spaces on Congress should be done on every single parking space along Congress. It'd create a cohesive district feeling, and it isn't like the area needs that meager number of parking spaces anymore anyway to thrive.

    Waller Park, Capped 35, Congress/Speedway promenade, Zilker, Republic Square...while not Central Park, I think Austin will be doing quite well.
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Old Posted Jan 6, 2017, 12:10 AM
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I personally love Zilker, but my love of it doesn't make it qualify as a world-class park...I know, I'm not that big of a deal.

However, I think that one of the charms of Austin is the natural settings of its parks. A lot of parks in massive cities around the world that I've been to seem a bit sterile and manufactured to me...though a deck park over 35 would definitely allow for some of that and would be an appropriate setting for it also.

I am hopeful of how the Waller Creek Trail park(s) will turn out - those have great potential.

Back to museums. I think a Live Music Museum would do incredibly well, so long as it's not a cheesy collection of stuff a la Hard Rock Cafe. They would get so much traffic during ACL and SXSW alone, not to mention normal traffic throughout the rest of the year.

I echo the benefit of expanding Blanton and the addition of a proper aquarium and zoo. Would a zoo fit well into Zilker or in that area? Or should it be left out in the sticks where the zoo currently is? Although that one is more of a rescue shelter, it's still great for what it is. We also have the LBJ Library and the Bob Bullock...those are decent as well, but having other options would be great. A planetarium across from Bullock is still my preference, even without the tower.
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Old Posted Jan 6, 2017, 12:13 AM
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Old Posted Jan 6, 2017, 12:40 AM
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There's a lot of stuff about music that you could dedicate an entire museum about that is specific to live performance:
  • Exhibits on major music artists' tours
  • Exhibits on live music districts in various cities and what styles of music toward whose development they contributed (Seattle, Nashville, Memphis, Austin, LA, etc.)
  • Exhibits on major music halls and historically important smaller venues.
  • Exhibits on various technologies (and their histories) that go into live music performance (sound, lighting, pyrotechnics, etc.)
  • Exhibits on the various different vocal training regimes that different genres require (I'm thinking broadly here, opera, classical, pop, etc.) and the training that various instruments require.
  • Exhibits on theater live performance (the orchestra and musicals)
  • Exhibits on renowned vocalists from various areas, times, genres
  • Exhibits on major music festivals (SXSW, ACL, Fun Fun Fun Fest, Coachella, EDC, Bonnaroo, etc.)
  • Exhibits on major (mostly) music award show performances (Grammys, Oscars' best song performance tradition, for instance, CMAs, AMAs, etc.)
  • Exhibits on the major musical performance competition shows (American Idol, etc.)
  • Exhibits on music performance in television talk shows, etc. (SNL, Tonight Show, Ellen, Late Show, Kimmel, etc.)
  • Exhibits on live music performance and marketing throughout time?
  • Exhibits on major music performance history moments (Mariah Carey, Milli Vanilli, Ashley Simpson, etc., though not confined to lipsyncing scandals, obviously)
  • 2-3 theater rooms designed for viewing (in full surround sound) full length videos of selected artists' concerts, documentaries, feature films about live music performers, music festival concerts, among other content.
  • 5-10 music venues of various sizes and purposes as I mentioned above.
  • A couple of recording studios that can be booked by local artists (maybe the sessions could be filmed for museum archives)?
  • Workshops in live music performance education.
  • You could even seek to have the museum become a depository for materials from various local music festivals. Over time, as an institution gains prestige, others elsewhere and other relevant organizations could do the same.
  • Street level retail (perhaps these could be some of the smaller music venues, so that they have separate entrances)
  • Live/Work lofts for local artists
  • Multiple public plazas for impromptu performances and more scheduled/programmed use.

Last edited by wwmiv; Jan 6, 2017 at 1:44 AM.
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