James Stirling. Staatsgalerie Stuttgart, Stuttgart, Germany, Elevation of gallery entrance and perspective of canopy from below. 1978

James Stirling Staatsgalerie Stuttgart, Stuttgart, Germany, Elevation of gallery entrance and perspective of canopy from below 1978

  • Not on view

James Stirling and Michael Wilford & Associates' postmodern design for the extension of the Staatsgalerie Stuttgart, a project also containing a theater and a music school, won a limited competition in 1977. The architects were aiming for a building that would be both a monumental civic structure and an informal one, reflecting the evolving role of the Western museum as a place of popular entertainment. "High tech" in some respects while traditional in others, the building was intended to relate simultaneously to its context—the city of Stuttgart, heavily rebuilt after World War II—and to the Staatsgalerie's original, neoclassical building, to which it would be attached.

The design combines a wide range of architectural references both general and particular: Romanesque windows (seen in this drawing), Egyptian entrances, Greek columns, and allusions to specific buildings such as Karl Friedrich Schinkel's Altes Museum in Berlin, Gunnar Asplund's Stockholm Library, and Raphael's Villa Madama, Rome. These eclectic juxtapositions of traditional elements, along with the more contemporary presence of components in colored metals, result in an inventive and vibrant modern building.

This drawing is an unusual perspective view of the main entrance, showing it from various vantage points at once—both from below and in elevation. The orange revolving doors and the blue canopy with its supporting green I-beam are viewed from beneath, while the wall with its Romanesque window, and the red beam to which the canopy is attached, are shown in elevation. Stirling made the drawing early in the project, and elements such as the informal and decorative metallic pink railings were relocated in the final design.

Publication excerpt from an essay by Bevin Cline, in Matilda McQuaid, ed., Envisioning Architecture: Drawings from The Museum of Modern Art, New York: The Museum of Modern Art, 2002, p. 198.
Graphite and color pencil on tracing paper
21 x 19 7/8" (53.3 x 50.5 cm)
Gift of the architect
Object number
© 2019 James Stirling
Architecture and Design

If you would like to reproduce an image of a work of art in MoMA’s collection, or an image of a MoMA publication or archival material (including installation views, checklists, and press releases), please contact Art Resource (publication in North America) or Scala Archives (publication in all other geographic locations).

All requests to license audio or video footage produced by MoMA should be addressed to Scala Archives at firenze@scalarchives.com. Motion picture film stills or motion picture footage from films in MoMA's Film Collection cannot be licensed by MoMA/Scala. For licensing motion picture film footage it is advised to apply directly to the copyright holders. For access to motion picture film stills please contact the Film Study Center. More information is also available about the film collection and the Circulating Film and Video Library.

If you would like to reproduce text from a MoMA publication or moma.org, please email text_permissions@moma.org. If you would like to publish text from MoMA’s archival materials, please fill out this permission form and send to archives@moma.org.

This record is a work in progress. If you have additional information or spotted an error, please send feedback to digital@moma.org.