Portland Art Museum – Rothko Pavilion

Portland, Oregon

The Portland Art Museum’s campus consists of two landmark structures, the Main Building (Pietro Belluschi, 1932) and the Mark Building (Frederick Fritsch, 1924). The buildings, presently linked by an underground passage, lack direct connections above grade, limiting the museum’s programming and visitor experience.  A new entry pavilion, named in honor of artist Marc Rothko, will link the two buildings and provide connectivity at four levels, uniting the museum campus. The new pavilion and the surrounding existing museum complex was developed in a collaborative design effort by Vinci Hamp and Hennebery Eddy Architects, located in Portland.

The four story Rothko Pavilion will become the museum’s new front door, announced by a glazed entry bay with a rooftop terrace overlooking the city’s Park Blocks.  The second and third gallery floors rise up to match the cornice lines of the flanking landmarks and a fourth floor gallery steps back from the east facade.  The Pavilion maintains public access between Park and 10th Avenues, affording the passersby views into both the new Community Commons and the renewed ground level galleries of the Mark Building.

The pavilion’s west entry is fronted by a new public plaza for sculpture, museum events and café seating. The pedestrian passage-way proceeds alongside and through the building.  East and west facades are sheathed in monumental glazing with a bird-safe frit pattern, providing visual connectivity across the site.

The Rothko Pavilion connects Belluschi’s landmark complex to the Mark Building with a distinguished glass facade.

Nested between Belluschi’s 1932 Ayer Wing and his 1939 Hirsch Wing, is the museum’s art receiving facility with a new art gallery overlooking Jefferson St.


Images Courtesy of Vinci | Hamp Architects, Inc.

and Hennebery Eddy Architects, Inc.