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A look inside the environmentally correct museum

January 14, 2009 |  3:52 pm


When we last checked in with San Francisco's new California Academy of Sciences building, our architecture critic Christopher Hawthorne had mostly positive things to say about Renzo Piano's "flying carpet" design. He found the Golden Gate Park building "unusually rich, thoughtful and evocative."

But there's more to a museum than what meets the eye. Margot Roosevelt, at our sister blog Greenspace, checks out the exhibitions inside. For all the cool features, Roosevelt says what makes the academy stand out is its uncompromising stance on climate change.

A current exhibit, "Altered State" is a bold, 10,000-square-foot display on global warming designed by the Los Angeles production firm Cinnabar.

This museum's treatment of climate change takes the word "interactive" to a new level. As Roosevelt says, it all but shouts at the visitor: Do something about it!

--Sherry Stern

Photo: The grassy roof of the California Academy of Sciences. Credit: Tim Griffith