edited by Sheila Kim -- Interior Design, 2/1/2003 12:00:00 AM
San Francisco's Asian Art Museum, which previously occupied a wing of Golden Gate Park's de Young Museum, is reopening in the city's former Main Library. Renovated by Italian architect Gae Aulenti—with the aid of Hellmuth, Obata & Kassabaum, LDA Architects, and Robert Wong Architect—the 185,000-square-foot building still boasts many of its original 1917 beaux arts details: travertine lobby floors, quotes from the Bible and various literary figures embellishing the library, vaulted ceilings in the north and south courts. Aulenti's touch is visible in a new skylit court and an escalator that punches through the curtain wall to slink along the exterior of the building in a separate glass-enclosed structure. Attractions now include a shop, a café with a terrace, and multipurpose classrooms. That's in addition, of course, to a collection of nearly 13,000 artworks and objects. March 20; 415-581-3500; asianart.org.