Making Modern at the MFAH
This series of short films captures the making of the Nancy and Rich Kinder Building, which opened to the public on November 21, 2020. Meet the community of artists, artisans, and architects who have all been part of the project. #GetModernMFAH
Watch the Trailer
From Berlin to Bilbao to New York and back to Houston, see some behind-the-scenes moments from the making of the Kinder Building. #GetModernMFAH
Construction in 30 Seconds
This time-lapse video tracks the construction of the Nancy and Rich Kinder Building in 30 seconds. See the design by Steven Holl Architects, and the landscape plan by Deborah Nevins & Associates, come to life. Beneath the MFAH campus, one parking garage and two pedestrian tunnels were also constructed.
The translucent Kinder Building, dedicated to works from the Museum’s international collections of modern and contemporary art, stands in complementary contrast to the Ludwig Mies van der Rohe–designed Caroline Wiess Law Building (1958/1974) and the stone facade of Rafael Moneo’s Audrey Jones Beck Building (2000). With two floors of galleries and a three-level atrium, the Kinder Building opened on November 21, 2020. #GetModernMFAH
New York Architect Meets Texas “Big Sky”
The clouds of the Texas “big sky” inspired renowned architect Steven Holl to design the complex, distinctive roof of the Nancy and Rich Kinder Building as a “luminous canopy.” We interviewed Holl at his studio in Rhinebeck, New York, in August 2020, to hear more about that inspiration and his favorite material: light. Here at the MFAH, see more of Holl’s watercolors, sketches, and models in the exhibition Making Architecture, a survey of his recent work that opens at the Glassell School of Art on December 4. #GetModernMFAH
Ai Weiwei: Child’s-Eye Dragon
Artist Ai Weiwei has tapped into ancient Chinese tradition and childhood memories of kite dragons to create a unique, monumental piece for Houston. His new work Dragon Reflection is constructed of silk, bamboo, and reflective discs—all suspended from the ceiling of the Glassell School of Art’s Education Court. This interview was filmed in the artist’s Berlin studio in the fall of 2019, when Dragon Reflection was still in progress. #GetModernMFAH
Safety Chief Is a Mom
Meet the Houston mom of four who kept a team of hundreds of craft workers safe and on their toes over the three years that it took to build the Nancy and Rich Kinder Building. “I see my dad in them … it’s somebody else’s dad ... and so for me, it’s even more personal. We need to make sure we take care of them.” #GetModernMFAH
Texas Welders Forge an Architect’s Vision from a Sketch
The clouds of the “big Texas sky” inspired architect Steven Holl to sketch the roof for the Nancy and Rich Kinder Building as a “luminous canopy.” It was up to the engineers and welders on the site in Houston to figure out how to construct that roof, and the building that supports it. Watch as one of the team leaders describes what took place over the course of more than a year and why he says a welder is an artist, just like a painter. #GetModernMFAH
Making Modern | Perfecting the Glass
More than 1,000 glass tubes make up the facade of the Nancy and Rich Kinder Building—an exterior that has never before been attempted. Specifically designed to accommodate Houston’s heat and sometimes volatile weather conditions, these fragile glass structures called for innovative assembly. Hear from the engineers about the ″gravity bending” that went into designing the Kinder Building. #GetModernMFAH
Making Modern | Local Photographers Make Art at the MFAH
“Art is life. One must draw upon his personal experiences.” —photographer Earlie Hudnall, Jr.
Connect with photography from around the world and across the medium’s history in the galleries of the Nancy and Rich Kinder Building. #GetModernMFAH
“Making Modern” has been made possible in part by a major grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities: Exploring the human endeavor.