Centre Georges Pompidou, one of Paris’ most important places, boasts of more than just high-tech architecture. It also houses the remnants and artefacts of the rich culture and history of the city, as well as the whole of France.
The complex of Centre Georges Pompidou is located in the Beauborg of the 4th arrondissement of the city. True to it’s the tag in its name, it is in the center of most of Parisian, being as it is near the shopping district of Les Halles, the food haven of rue Montorgueil, and the historic district of the Marais.
Its striking design is the result of a collaboration between two prize-winning entities: Renzo Piano Knight Grand Cross, a world renowned Italian architect and recipient of the Pritzker Architecture Prize, AIA Gold Medal, Kyoto Prize, and the Sonning Prize, British modernist and functionalist designer Richard George Rogers, Baron Rogers of Riverside, his wife, Su Rogers, Gianfranco Franchini, British founder of Buro Happold Professor Sir Edmund Happold, and Peter Rice, an Irish structural engineer.
The building was noted for being well head of its time. In an era where there are not many standards of safety or functionality in buildings, the Centre Georges Pompidou already has color-coded functional structural elements. It had green pipes for plumbing, blue ducts for climate control, yellow electrical wires, and red paint for circulation elements and safety devices.
The New York Times said in 2007 that it “turned the architecture world upside down” and that Rogers earned a reputation as a high-tech iconoclast with its completion because of its exposed skeleton of brightly colored tubes for mechanical systems. It also “revolutionized museums, transforming what had once been elite monuments into popular places of social and cultural exchange, woven into the heart of the city,” said the Pritzker jury.
The complex was built by Vinci, formerly called Societe Generale d’Enterprises. Vinci is a French concession and the largest construction company in the world by revenue at the time. Costing about 993 million 1972 French francs, it was completed in 1977. Twenty years later, another 576 million 1999 francs was injected into it in a renovated project which lasted from October 1996 to January 2000.
The Centre Georges Pompidou is now one of Paris’ most favored exhibition spaces. Major exhibitions are organized every year on its first or sixth floor. Monograph, a work of writing upon a single subject, usually by a single author, is the usual exhibit.
The fifth floor room of the complex has also forever become part of popular culture, as it was used as the office of Holly Goodhead in the “Moonraker,” a 1979 spy film from the James Bond series. The futuristic look of the room was perfect for it to be portrayed as part of the space station of the villainous Hugo Drax.
At the front of the building, the Centre Georges Pompidou serves as a performance space for many independent artists, such as mimes and jugglers. A recent development has shown that this informal arrangement is being appropriated as a formal part of the complex, with miniature carnivals now being built within it. The complex also serves as the venue of activities for bands, caricatures, sketch artists, dinners, and skateboarding competitions.