Star Wars creator dreams of California for site of storied Lucas Museum

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MAD Architects has created two new concepts for the Lucas Museum of Narrative Art, both of which would be based in California(Credit: Lucas Museum of Narrative Art)

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While it's unlikely that George Lucas will appreciate the irony, it seems fitting that a museum of storytelling should have such complex plot twists. Indeed, the troubled saga of the building of his Lucas Museum of Narrative Art (LMNA) is now on episodes three and four.

The storied history behind the Lucas Museum didn't begin in a galaxy far, far away, but in Chicago in 2014. Back then, MAD envisaged an undulating mass that would look almost like a hill rising out of the ground.

The design was subsequently approved by the council after being scaled back, before then being canned altogether in a twist worthy of any blockbuster. A prequel to that would have seen OMA bring the project to fruition under the guise of the Lucas Cultural Arts Museum.

But Lucas seems determined to get his museum built. Long-time collaborator MAD Architects has created two new design concepts for the LMNA, both of which would be based in California. One imagines the museum on a site in Los Angeles' Exposition Park and the other would see it developed on San Francisco's Treasure Island.

The proposals are comparable in size, both offering 265,000-275,000 sq ft (24,600-25,500 sq m) of interior space, of which 90,000-100,000 sq ft (8,400-9,300 sq m) would be galleries. Both also look recognizably MAD in their aesthetic, with organic curves very much the order of the day.

The LA design appears to be rooted to the ground at three points, with a sweeping, low profile that sees trees incorporated into its rooftop. The San Francisco concept, meanwhile, shows large expanses of glass that grows into a bulbous structure at one end and would offer visitors views out over the adjacent water.

There's precious little detail about the new concepts at this stage, but we'll be watching this story unfold and will bring you updates as they happen.

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