Los Angeles to be Home for The Lucas Museum of Narrative Art
Via Los Angeles Times:
The suspense has been as epic as “Star Wars,” but after months of intense speculation, George Lucas’ Museum of Narrative Art on Tuesday chose Los Angeles as its home over San Francisco.
The filmmaker’s personal collection of fine and popular art, including ephemera related to his “Star Wars” franchise, will fill a futuristic-looking new museum planned for L.A.’s Exposition Park, which beat out a competing design for Treasure Island in San Francisco Bay. The rivalry had pitted the two cities in the competition not only for Lucas’ collection and the tourism it will bring, but also for the thousands of jobs that backers said the project will create.
Lucas has said he will fund the project to the tune of about $1 billion, including building costs, his art and an endowment of at least $400 million.
“It feels like this incredible gift has come home. I always thought Los Angeles was the natural place to spread the vision of George Lucas and Mellody Hobson, to make art and creativity accessible and inspirational to the next generation,” Mayor Eric Garcetti said of the filmmaker and his wife. “It’s a natural place to have this museum in the creative capital of the world and in the geographic center of the city. It’s a banner day for L.A.”
Garcetti said the 275,000-square-foot museum will lead to tens of thousands of jobs in construction, and he estimated the number of permanent jobs created by the museum at more than a thousand — “and that’s a lowball estimate.”
“People will visit from around the world to see the original Darth Vader mask and Norman Rockwell paintings,” he said.
Entertainment and cultural leaders including Los Angeles County Museum of Art Director Michael Govan, Academy Museum of Motion Pictures leader Kerry Brougher and DreamWorks Animation Chief Executive Jeffrey Katzenberg gathered before the L.A. County Board of Supervisors in November to show their support for Lucas’ project.
“This is a real triumph for the city of L.A., and this will be a transformative opportunity for L.A.,” Katzenberg said Tuesday after learning of Lucas’ decision. “First and foremost for our residents, who are going to have an outstanding cultural, iconic new force here — the force will be with us — and I think for tourism, and for the continued, extraordinary transformation of downtown Los Angeles, and for Exposition Park and the other museums it will be joining.”
Lucas, 72, has spent years trying to erect a museum for his art collection, which consists of about 10,000 paintings and illustrations including works by Rockwell, N.C. Wyeth and R. Crumb, along with Hollywood memorabilia from films such as “Star Wars” and “The Ten Commandments.” In 2009 he set his sights near his home turf in San Francisco but faced community opposition from the city’s Presidio Trust about building in the historic park. Lucas then aimed for Chicago, Hobson’s hometown, but encountered resistance from Friends of the Parks about a downtown site along Lake Michigan.
The entire article can be read HERE.