George Lucas museum-1

In case you hadn’t seen them yet, these are the initial plans for George Lucas’ new Chicago art museum (which we retrieved from the memory systems of an R2 unit, of course).

The design comes from Beijing architecture firm MAD, who, in our estimation, took inspiration from Princess Leia’s home planet of Alderaan.

alderaan Alderaan drawing: Ralph McQuarrie via Wookipedia

Chicago alderman Bob Fioretti, meanwhile, likens the building to the home of a Star Wars villain, a certain slimy piece of worm-ridden filth. From Chicago Sun-Times:

“It looks like a palace for Jabba the Hutt. I was wondering what planet we are on,” Ald. Bob Fioretti [told the Sun-Times].

The man has a point.

Jabba the Hutt palace Jabba’s palace drawing: Ralph McQuarrie via Wookipedia

But whether you think the museum is more Alderaanian castle or giant slug palace, there is someone who digs the design. Canadian architect Frank Gehry, the same man who made headlines in October for saying “In this world we are living in, 98 per cent of everything that is built and designed today is pure shit.”

Of the Lucas museum, Gehry wrote for the Chicago Tribune:

There is a natural impulse to deride a project in the early stages of design, particularly one that has a new shape or expression.

I would hope that the people of Chicago take the proper time to review the Lucas Museum. I also hope that they will give the client and the architects sufficient time to develop the project — to work with the city and the public to evolve the design.

Please do not dismiss it because it doesn’t look like something you’ve never seen before.

Slated for completion in 2019, the lakefront project, officially called the Lucas Museum of Narrative Art, will house the Star Wars creator’s own art collection as well as other works — if it does indeed get built. The plan is currently on hold until after February 26th, 2015, which is when a lawsuit challenging the city’s right to build the new museum will be heard.

Two more renderings of the design.

George Lucas museum-2 George Lucas museum-3

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