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Richard Gilder Center for Science, Education, and Innovation

A Journey into the Wondrous Realm of Nature

Studio Gang

Richard Gilder Center for Science, Education, and Innovation
By Elisa Grossi -

Walking into the Richard Gilder Center feels almost like venturing into a canyon in the southwestern United States. The heart of this, the latest addition to the American Museum of Natural History (AMNH) in New York City, is a vast, full-height, organically shaped atrium that mimics a cave environment, catapulting visitors into the natural realm and inspiring a sense of awe and wonder.

Studio Gang conceived the Richard Gilder Center for Science, Education, and Innovation to be a perfect example of experiential architecture, stimulating curiosity about the world around us and encouraging us to explore it. Accessible to all – children, seniors, student groups and people with disabilities – the building encompasses as many as 33 interconnections with other buildings on the campus, offering a new entrance to the museum from Columbus Avenue, adjacent to Theodore Roosevelt Park. 
The Richard Gilder Center is the modern-day renewal of the long-established natural history museum’s mission: to instill confidence in science and raise awareness among young and old about protecting our planet and its myriad life forms. 
Initially founded in 1869, in over 40 rooms dedicated to permanent exhibits plus others hosting temporary exhibitions, AMNH holds over 34 million artifacts and items dating all the way back to prehistoric times. Firmly established in the collective imagination of New Yorkers, American and international visitors, the museum provided the setting for the 00s comedy film Night at the Museum, starring Ben Stiller as a night watchman and Robin Williams as President Theodore Roosevelt.
Opened in May 2023, the new Center combines exhibition areas with learning spaces, research labs, a library and a restaurant. It is named in memory of philanthropist Richard Gilder, a co-founder of the Gilder Lehrman Institute of American History who died in 2020. 

Ten years in the making, the project spans a...

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