Beaubourg(bōbo͝or`), popular name for the
Georges Pompidou National Center for Art and Culture(zhôrzh pôNpēdo͞o`), museum in Paris, France; the popular name is derived from the district in which it is located. Proposed by French president Georges PompidouPompidou, Georges Jean Raymond
, 1911–74. French political leader, president of France (1969–74). Georges Pompidou taught school and then served in World War II until the fall (1940) of France, when he returned to teaching.
..... Click the link for more information. in 1969, the center was designed by architects Renzo PianoPiano, Renzo
, 1937–, Italian architect, b. Genoa. Piano attended architecture school at Milan Polytechnic, graduating in 1964. The prolific Piano has been lauded for responding to the needs of each building site rather than cleaving to a single architectural style and has
..... Click the link for more information. of Italy and Richard RogersRogers, Richard, Baron Rogers of Riverside,
1933–, British architect, b. Florence, Italy, studied Architectural Association, London (1954–59), Yale (M.Arch., 1962). With Norman Foster and two other architects he cofounded (1963) Team 4, his first firm.
..... Click the link for more information. of England along with the Danish engineering firm of Ove Arup and was opened in 1977. Its industrial style, with bold architectural elements such as its steel superstructure, clear plastic escalator tunnels, brightly colored elevators, and color-coded utility pipes and ducts exposed on the outside of the building, generated furious controversy during its construction and for some years thereafter. Like the Eiffel TowerEiffel Tower,
structure designed by A. G. Eiffel and erected in the Champ-de-Mars for the Paris exposition of 1889. The tower is 984 ft (300 m) high and consists of an iron framework supported on four masonry piers, from which rise four columns uniting to form one shaft.
..... Click the link for more information. , which precipitated a critical storm in its own time, the Beaubourg has become a tourist attraction and a popular Parisian landmark. Now commanding much of the authority of a 20th-century LouvreLouvre
, foremost French museum of art, located in Paris. The building was a royal fortress and palace built by Philip II in the late 12th cent. In 1546 Pierre Lescot was commissioned by Francis I to erect a new building on the site of the Louvre.
..... Click the link for more information. , the six-story building houses a museum of modern and contemporary art, a public library, a cinema and performance halls, and music and industrial design centers. By the early 1990s rust and peeling paint on the building's exterior made restoration necessary. Begun in 1997 and completed in 1999 (the museum reopened in 2000), the renovation included increased space, an updated library, basement theaters, a restaurant, and other expanded facilities. In 2010 the Beaubourg opened its first regional museum, in Metz. The Pompidou-Metz features art from the Paris collection, showcased in a futuristic structure designed by the Japanese architect Shigeru Ban.
See N. Silver, The Making of Beaubourg (1994).