When the Petersen Automotive Museum unveiled its radical new redesign in 2015, to put it in the mildest of terms, the reaction from critics was ... unfriendly. It was called “the Guy Fieri of buildings.” But the joke may be on the critics: The Petersen, which often lands on lists of LA’s ugliest buildings, just won an award for architecture.
The Chicago Athenaeum announced the 79 winners of its 2017 American Architecture Awards, and the Petersen Automotive Museum was named among best new buildings designed by American architects. As the Chicago Athenaeum puts it, the redesign “transforms the Petersen building into one of the most significant and unforgettable structures in Los Angeles.”
A panel of Greek architects deliberated over a shortlist of 300 new buildings and urban planning projects before whittling that list down to the final 79. Six of those designs reside in the LA area.
The Petersen wasn’t the only LA museum to be recognized by the jury. The Main Museum of Los Angeles Art was also chosen as a winner, despite the fact that it’s nowhere near completion.