Art And Culture As Centralized Political Power

French novelist André Malraux, who was the first minister of French cultural affairs, proposed the idea of building a multicultural complex in the heart of Paris. Thus the Centre Georges Pompidou was eventually built in 1970s and is today hosting the vast public library, the Musée National d’Art Moderne (the largest museum for modern art in Europe), and the Institut de Recherche et Coordination Acoustique/Musique (a European institute for science about music and sound and avant garde electro-acoustical art music).

Despite causing much controversy, Centre Georges Pompidou had revolutionized our ideas about museums by transforming the traditional places of elite monuments into democratic places of social and cultural exchange. Architecturally daring, this edifice turned the architecture world upside down (or perhaps inside out?) by exposing the innards of the giant building to the outside world. Thus we see that all the typically hidden infrastructure, such as plumbing, electrical wiring, climate control and such, get exposed on the outside of this multiplex:

As you can see from the above photos, functional structural elements are color coded: green pipes are plumbing, blue ducts are for climate control, electrical wires are encased in yellow, and circulation elements and devices for safety (e.g., fire extinguishers) are red.

A fairly large open space, usually hosting street performers and carnivals, leads visitors into the building:

As you climb the escalator, exciting Parisian vistas open up:

My favorite 20th century artist:

This museum is huge, need to go out to on the terrace for a break:

Another attraction in front of the Centre Georges Pompidou is the Stravinsky Fountain. It contains sixteen moving sculptures that represent themes and works by composer Igor Stravinsky:


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