The original building, which will be hidden underneath KPF’s reimagined facade, was designed by Los Angeles architect Welton Becket in 1962. Becket is perhaps best known for his design of the Capitol Records Building in Hollywood. According to the museum the renovation, which includes an extensive redesign of existing galleries and 15,000 square feet of additional gallery space, will not significantly alter the original Becket building’s base. In terms of the facade treatment, however, it’s a completely new direction, and gives Diller Scofidio + Renfro’s “veil” for the Broad Museum, currently underway downtown, a run for its money.
But is this enough to bring the Petersen new visitors and increase repeat visits to 60 percent of its daily attendance, as the museum hopes? The museum has reportedly been criticized for selling off a number of its rare automobiles to raise money for the renovation. On Sunday, Peter Mullin, chairman of the museum’s board, said the $10 million raised from the sale of cars would be used to enhance the collection and the galleries. A separate capital campaign will fund the facade. The budget for the total renovation could go as high as $20 million. With all that undulating stainless steel they are going to need it.