The Pompidou Center, better known as Beaubourg, is still one of Paris most touristic places and one of the world's most visited museums.
The Pompidou Center inaugured in 1981 was designed by Renzo Piano and Richard Rogers.The project was awarded to this team in an architectural design competition. The New York Times noted that the design of the Centre "turned the architecture world upside down". With its exposed skeleton of brightly coloured tubes for mechanical systems. The Pritzker jury said the Pompidou "revolutionized museums, transforming what had once been elite monuments into popular places. This is the French National Modern Art Museum. Il contains collections of the XXth century, with master pieces from Picasso, Braque, Matisse, Dalì, Chagall, Miro...
But The George Pompidou Center isn't just an art gallery: it also holds a library, a graphic laboratory, a video library, an architectural and design collections, a industrial creation center, an institute specialized in experimenting sounds and music and the reconstruction of the great sculptor Constantin Brancusi's atelier.
The most amazing side of the Pompidou Center, its true secret, is its huge room where everybody can wander about without getting bored, as if it were a colourful amusement park.
What is most important, it gives the opportunity to enjoy modern art to visitors who may not know anything about it, allowing them to have fun and feel full of wonder like a child on a merry-go-round.
The record crowds at the Public Information Library (BPI), with 14,000 people a day, sometimes annoy other visitors. While easily explained (encyclopaedic collections, free access without membership cards or registration, 1,800 reading desks), the shortcomings and inadequacy of university libraries in Paris are also partly to blame. With its 450,000 books, 2,600 magazines and journals, and 2,400 videos (not to mention the use of new technologies), the BPI maintains its remarkable standard through a constant process of "weeding out" to remove as many volumes as are added to keep up with new publications.
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