Wrightwood 659 is a new exhibition space conceived for the presentation of exhibitions of architecture and of socially engaged art. It is designed by Pritzker Prize-winning architect Tadao Ando, who has transformed a 1920s building with his signature concrete forms and poetic treatment of natural light.
In a city rich with art institutions and internationally known for its architecture, Wrightwood 659 is designed as a site for contemplative experiences of art and architecture, and as a place to engage with the pressing social issues of our time. Located at 659 W. Wrightwood Avenue, in Chicago’s Lincoln Park neighborhood, it is a private, non-commercial initiative envisioned as an integral part of the cultural and civic fabric of Chicago, as well as a new kind of art space and cultural resource.
Conversion of a four-story 1929-1930 apartment building into a space for exhibitions devoted to architecture and socially engaged art. The entire interior of the apartment building was removed and a new steel and reinforced-concrete structure was erected within the perimeter masonry shell.
The reconfigured space provides an up-to-date environment for art and a seamless visitor experience. The architect also introduced an atrium and grand stairway, and installed new building mechanical systems with state-of-the-art climate control, among numerous other undertakings.
In addition to removing the entire interior, the architect added a new rooftop structure providing a contemplative north art-viewing terrace and a city-skyline vista from the south terrace.