After more than a decade of development and construction, the long-awaited Orange County Museum of Art (OCMA) opened to the public on Saturday October 8, 2022. Designed by Thom Mayne of Morphosis, the 53,000 SF museum is the last performing arts venue to be built as part of the Segerstrom Center for the Arts in Costa Mesa, CA.
The OCMA celebrated the opening with a full 24-hours of programming, with five inaugural exhibitions on display. Public admission to the gallery will be free for the next 10 years, thanks to a generous grant from a local business – an open invitation that shows how the OCMA is accessible and welcoming to the entire community.
Morphosis designed the museum to be an open, communal space that softens the boundaries between interior and exterior. The building’s façade is its most dynamic feature, comprised of white terra cotta panels that curve and twist through galleries and around glass crosswalks.
“[The architect] understood what we wanted in a building most of all was an invitation, a beckoning to the entire community to come on by and experience what we have to offer … a seamless connection between outside and inside.” – OCMA Director Heidi Zuckerman, for KCET
Boston Valley worked closely with Morphosis to design and rationalize the OCMA’s curved façade, which started as a prototype exploration during the 2017 ACAWorkshop. Together, we fabricated a full-scale mockup as proof-of-concept for the ability of terra cotta to meet the tolerances, cuts, and curvatures required by the design.
Architectural terra cotta’s inherent flexibility made it possible to process the curved forms, while its low thermal mass and evaporative cooling potential is ideal for the dry, arid climate of Southern California. This specific combination of qualities could not be matched by other building materials, including metal and concrete.
Morphosis chose a high-performance white glaze for the terra cotta rainscreen, which enhances the light and airy feel of the expansive structure. The white color also helps to redirect the heat of the blazing West Coast sun away from the building, boosting its energy efficiency by keeping external surface temperatures down.
The OCMA has had heavy media coverage in recent weeks in anticipation of the opening. The project featured in articles by a number of digital publications, both national and local to Orange County. We have compiled these articles below for easy viewing:
- Photos: The new Orange County Museum of Art is opening its doors. Here’s a sneak peek
Granthshala News | 09.26.2022
- Orange County Museum of Art Opens to the Public on October 8th
- First photos of Morphosis’ soon-to-open Orange County Museum of Art
Archinect News | 09.29.2022
- New Orange County Museum of Art Aims for Open Access for All
KCET | 09.30.2022
- New Orange County Museum of Art rolls out red carpet for everyone
The Orange County Register | 10.02.2022
- With new $94m building, the Orange County Museum of Art gets its own version of the Met museum steps
The Art Newspaper | 10.03.2022
- Morphosis-designed Orange County Museum of Art to open on October 8
Urbanize | 10.03.2022
- OCMA’s New Home
Orange Coast Magazine | 10.04.2022
- The Orange County Museum of Art debuts a bright (and free) museum worth crossing county lines for
Time Out | 10.07.2022
- The New O.C. Museum of Art Opens in the Heart of Costa Mesa
Voice of OC | 10.07.2022
- Morphosis unveils flowing Orange County Museum of Art
Wallpaper | 10.08.2022
- The Community-Centered Orange County Museum, by Morphosis, Opens in Southern California
Architectural Record | 10.10.2022
- Morphosis completes terra cotta-clad Orange County Museum of Art
Dezeen | 10.11.2022
- Moving On Up: The Orange County Museum of Art’s A-List Move
Newsbreak | 10.14.22
- Morphosis Designs A White, Glazed Terra Cotta Museum of Art in California
Surfaces Reporter | 10.17.22
- Orange County Museum of Art / Morphosis Architects
Arch Daily | 02.08.23