The Tacoma Art Museum in Washington State recently opened its new Haub Family Galleries to the public. The galleries, which added 16,000 square feet to the museum and doubled its gallery space, were designed by Olson Kundig Architects. The $15.5 million project is the firm’s first museum building.
The Haub Family Galleries houses the museum’s Haub Family Collection of Western American Art, which consists of nearly 300 pieces. The design of the building nods to Tacoma’s history of shipping, logging, and railroading through a palette of earthy materials and sliding sun screens fashioned from Richlite, a sustainable material that is made locally from recycled paper, organic fiber, and phenolic resin.
“Architecturally, the challenges became opportunities,” Tom Kundig says. “It was an opportunity to create new venues to view art. The design takes into account Tacoma’s diverse and historic neighborhoods. The West doesn’t stop in Wyoming. Tacoma, the ‘City of Destiny,’ was the western terminus of the Northern Pacific Railroad, and played an important part of the larger story of the West.”