Interior Built Environment: Exploring the High Museum of Art

Exploring the High Museum of Art

The High Museum of Art (Lunandy)

Situated in Midtown Atlanta, the High Museum of Art is one of Atlanta’s leading Arts facilities. Its modern interior design is made to complement the art by providing a simple, distraction-free display.

The first day that a new exhibit opens is usually extremely busy. This was exactly the case on Sunday, February 28th, 2016, when the High Museum opened its exhibit, Jean-Michel Basquiat: The Unknown Notebooks. At around 1:30 pm on this sunny day, tons of people visited the museum to admire the work of such a revolutionary artist.

The broad range of visitors that art attracts was perfectly represented by simply gazing around the room. Parents were there with their children, young couples were holding hands, elderly couples were sitting on the benches to admire the artwork, and groups of friends were browsing the gift shop and taking selfies next to the artwork. At each corner and entryway, there was a security guard stationed with a stern facial expression and a posture that gave off an air of “don’t mess with me”. Also dressed in all black to stand out in the light themed museum were the starkly different employees of the museum. Their jolly faces and friendly tones would make anyone feel welcome, and even convinced me that purchasing a membership was worth my while. After I bought my membership, I grabbed a pamphlet, and I was ready to do some exploring.

As you enter the museum, rays of natural sunlight pour in through the large, floor to ceiling windows. It is clear that lighting played a huge part in the design of the building. The picture to the left is an example of how even the darkest corner in the exhibit utilizes natural lighting. To illuminate the areas that cannot be reached by natural light, un-tinted recessed lighting is used.

The colors used throughout the museum were strategically chosen to display the artwork in a distraction-free environment. The walls, stairs, elevators, and even the information desk are all a pristine, spotless, white color. Also seen in the picture to the left is the shiny, light brown, simple wood flooring of the museum that carries the natural, bright theme of the interior design.

Another key aspect of the High Museum’s is its symmetry. The walls, furniture, wooden floors, and entryways all feature the same hard corners and symmetrical lines and right angles. As seen in the following pictures, the pedestals, interior windows, walls, and artwork are aligned to create a uniform design.

Hexagon Room

The Hexagon Room perfectly exemplifies the symmetry in the interior design of the museum.


The natural light, colors, and symmetry all contribute to the large, open interior layout. The pathways throughout the museum are all made to easily accommodate a constant flow of small and large crowds. Minimal furniture and obstructions in the pathways let visitors move slowly to admire the art.

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As I left the museum, I passed groups of people discussing the artwork in hushed tones and heard the slow footsteps of the visitors as they navigated the High Museum’s wide and open interior. This modern building has just the right amount of exterior character to draw people in and provides the perfect interior to display art for all to joy.


Works Cited

Lunandy, Edwin. High Museum of Art. 2015. Atlanta. Great Buildings. Web. 3 March 2016.

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