News Press Release

SFMOMA Announces Plans For Rooftop Sculpture Garden

Release date: November 16, 2005

November 16, 2005—The San Francisco Museum of Modern Art (SFMOMA) today announced plans to launch a competition to design a rooftop sculpture garden atop the SFMOMA parking garage. The garage is located on Minna Street directly behind the Museum's Mario Botta–designed building.

"We are thrilled to announce our ambitions for a rooftop sculpture garden," states SFMOMA Director Neal Benezra. "The garden promises to be architecturally distinctive and to provide a comfortable place for our visitors to relax and enjoy art outdoors. It also will provide us with the opportunity to display and expand our collection of modern and contemporary sculpture."

SFMOMA will invite selected architects based in Northern California to submit proposals for the garden. Support for this competition has been generously provided by an anonymous trustee. The winning design will be chosen by a jury comprising Benezra and a committee drawn from SFMOMA's Board of Trustees. The competition will be overseen by David Meckel, chair of SFMOMA's Architecture and Design Accessions Committee and current director of research and planning at California College of the Arts.

The 14,400-square foot sculpture garden will be constructed on the fifth-floor roof of the Minna Street parking garage and will be accessible via a bridge from the Museum's fifth-floor galleries. The rooftop space is surrounded by a twelve-foot wall that serves as a protection from wind and traffic noise and lends visual definition to the rooftop location. Once completed, the garden will be available as a venue for special events and functions.

SFMOMA will showcase a wide selection of sculpture in the garden on an ongoing basis. The Museum's collection features modern sculptures such as Alexander Calder's Big Crinkly (1969) and works by Alberto Giacometti and Henry Moore, as well as contemporary works, including Stele I (1973) by Ellsworth Kelly, Zim Zum I (1969) by Barnett Newman, Untitled (Wheels and Suspended Double Pyramid 3B) (1978) by Bruce Nauman, and Ferro (1978–82) by Mark di Suvero.

Media Contacts

  • Libby Garrison, 415.357.4177,
  • Robyn Wise, 415.357.4172,
  • Sandra Farish Sloan, 415.357.4174,


San Francisco Museum of Modern Art
151 Third Street
San Francisco, CA 94103

Founded in 1935 as the first West Coast museum devoted to modern and contemporary art, SFMOMA is currently undergoing a major expansion project that will significantly enhance gallery, education, and public spaces, enabling the museum to better showcase more of its expanded permanent collection. While the museum is temporarily closed for construction,  through 2016, SFMOMA is “on the go” with an extensive array of off-site programming across the Bay Area, including collaborative and traveling museum exhibitions, major outdoor projects and commissioned installations, and new education initiatives.

Visit or call 415.357.4000 for more information.