NYT raves about Bernard Tschumi's New Acropolis Museum (Rome)

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NO sane architect, one can assume, would want to invite comparisons between his building and the Parthenon. So it comes as little surprise that the New Acropolis Museum, which stands at the foot of one of the great achievements of human history, is a quiet work, especially by the standards of its flamboyant Swiss-born architect, Bernard Tschumi.

But in mastering his ego, Mr. Tschumi pulled off an impressive accomplishment: a building that is both an enlightening meditation on the Parthenon and a mesmerizing work in its own right. I can’t remember seeing a design that is so eloquent about another work of architecture.

When this museum in Athens opens next year, hundreds of marble sculptures from the old Acropolis museum alongside the Parthenon will finally reside in a place that can properly care for them. Missing, however, will be more than half of the surviving Parthenon sculptures, the Elgin Marbles, so called since they were carted off to London by Lord Elgin in the early 19th century.

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