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Michener’s Event Pavilion Wins Prestigious Architecture Award

DOYLESTOWN, PA-The Chicago Athenaeum: Museum of Architecture and Design and The European Centre for Architecture Art Design and Urban Studies have selected the Michener Art Museum’s Edgar N. Putman Event Pavilion for the International Architecture Award for 2013.

Sixty new buildings, commercial and institutional developments, and urban planning projects from 20 nations were selected from hundreds of submissions received for this year’s annual Global Awards Program from architecture. The Edgar N. Putman Event Pavilion was designed by KieranTimberlake of Philadelphia and completed in 2012.

The Putman Event Pavilion, an elegant, all-glass 3,400 square foot addition to the Michener, provides a premier indoor and outdoor space for large public programs ranging from Jazz Nights to lectures and private events. It allows multiple museum programs to function simultaneously within an elegant, all-glass structure that extends into the Patricia Pfundt Sculpture Garden, in conversation with the 19th-century stone walls of the former jailhouse. The glass walls in the Event Pavilion are among the largest self-supporting insulated glass units worldwide. In 2012, the Event Pavilion won a Gold Medal for Design Excellence from the Philadelphia Chapter of the American Institute of Architects.

“Our partnership with KieranTimberlake has resulted in a cohesive, elegant space that further adds to the aesthetics that define the museum operation,” said Michener Director & CEO Lisa Tremper Hanover. “Its function as a multi-purpose space has yielded positive results and rave reviews.”

James Timberlake, lead design partner for the project, said, “From the very beginning we thought that to truly celebrate the museum wall, and make the landscape more useful, a modest, transparent jewel box should be inserted in the garden. This singular act now brings this very special stone wall, which defines the museum, directly into the experience of the museum visitor.”

Constructed by Adams-Bickel Associates, the Event Pavilion demonstrates a unique and ambitious use of structural glass panels, allowing seamless views to and from the interior of the museum toward the magnificent former prison walls that enclose the Patricia D. Pfundt Sculpture Garden.

Founded in 1989, the Michener occupies the site of the former Bucks County Prison, built in 1884 and designed by Addison Hutton. Although much of the prison was torn down in 1986, remnants of the old stone building are incorporated into the museum, including three massive 23-foot tall fieldstone prison walls.

The Chicago Athenaeum: Museum of Architecture and Design and The European Centre for Architecture Art Design and Urban Studies program, the most prestigious in the world, honors new skyscrapers, commercial buildings, urban plans, private residences, and real estate projects that achieve a high standard of excellence in design, construction, planning, and sustainability and promote the best practice in all types of real estate development for the private and public sectors, including new skyscrapers, high rises, corporate and institutional buildings, commercial projects, city planning, restorations and adaptive reuse, religious and civic buildings, and interiors.

“The finalists span the globe, from South America to Asia, from North America to Europe, and we are particularly happy to share that diversity,” says Christian Narkiewicz-Laine, President, The Chicago Athenaeum. “All projects exhibit innovation in design, acute sensitivity to the environment, sustainability, adaptability to their surroundings, and provision of enjoyment to their many users. In one way or another, each finalist wowed the jury, which will make selection of the
winners a real challenge.”

This year’s selected buildings were from 20 nations including: Australia, Burundi, Canada, Finland, France, Germany, Great Britain, Ireland, Japan, Lebanon, Norway, People’s Republic of China, The Netherlands, Qatar, Singapore, South Africa, South Korea, Spain, Turkey, Vietnam, and The United States.

The James A. Michener Art Museum is located at 138 South Pine St., Doylestown, Pa. During the run of From Philadelphia to Monaco: GRACE KELLY – Beyond the Icon, October 28, 2013, through January 26, 2014, the following hours and admission prices will be in effect: Monday through Saturday, 10 a.m. – 5 p.m.; Sunday noon – 5 p.m. and Thursday evening until 8:30 p.m. Closed Thanksgiving, Christmas, and New Year’s Day. The Michener will be using a timed ticket entry system for non-members. Advance ticket purchase is highly recommended, and available only at or by calling 800-595-4849. Tickets include admission to all museum galleries and are free for members and children under 6; adults $18; seniors $17; college students with valid ID $16; ages 6-18 $8. Museum members enjoy priority entry and do not need timed tickets. Beginning January 28, 2014, museum hours resume to Tuesday through Friday, 10 am to 4:30 pm; Saturday 10 am to 5 pm; Sunday noon to 5 pm. Admission: Members and children under 6, free; adults $15; seniors $13; college student with valid ID $11; ages 6-18 $7.50; under 6 free.