Wednesday, February 6, 2013 , Updated 5:07 p.m., February 13, 2013
UPDATED: Wall Street Journal praises Perot Museum; Bloomberg questions it
But at least they're talking about it.
DALLAS UPDATE: About a week after the Wall Street Journal wrote about Dallas' Perot Museum, Bloomberg also reviewed the space. While the WSJ's critique was glowing in nearly every way, Bloomberg praised the architecture but questioned choices made inside the building. Scroll down to read more about Bloomberg's article.
Looking from the outside in, an article in the Wall Street Journal characterizes Dallas donors as generous and abundant, if fundraising for the Perot Museum is any indication. In a story called "How Dallas Does Philanthropy," the writer notes that the $185 million building required no public money or bonds.
Only in Texas?
The article cites just a few of the many donors who offered up more than $5 million to the museum, calling it a "Who's Who of Dallas' elite business leaders and corporations." It also praises the museum's design and displays, calling them "astonishing" and "dazzling." And here's a favorite explanation of the architecture: "A one-way escalator, part of which is encased in glass and looks stapled onto the outside of the building, takes visitors to the top floor, after which they descend by stairway or elevator." Stapled. How true.
The museum had already been celebrated up and down by local media. We called it the quintessential 21st century museum. It was also named one of the World's Coolest Futuristic Buildings by Travel + Leisure. The WSJ story is another example of Dallas in the spotlight. Feels good, doesn't it?
UPDATE: On February 11, Bloomberg wrote about the Perot, noting architect Thom Mayne's success in creating a visually intriguing building that "evokes wonder." Author James S. Russell didn't consider the building's exhibitions without flaw, however.
He called the exhibit design "careful instead of exhilarating." It's an interesting point to consider if you've been inside the building.
The story continues:
Some choices are scientifically questionable. In displays on water and weather I could find no consideration of climate change -- the defining natural-science challenge of our time.
The Tom Hunt Energy Hall, created by Paul Bernhard Exhibit Design & Consulting, distorts the energy picture, giving short shrift to both coal and alternative energy. It misstates the role of geothermal energy today. (It uses ordinary earth temperatures rather than the rare volcanic steam depicted.)
The focus on oil is no surprise, yet the Perot botches this display. A huge, menacing oil-drill model dominates an incomprehensible exhibit featuring computer-interactive displays blinking in the gloom.
People wandered off and became entranced by the spectacular gems and minerals hall next door.
If you've been inside the Perot, did you have a similar experience?
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