One of our most ambitious (and rewarding) projects we’ve taken on was the restoration of the Renwick Gallery of the Smithsonian American Art Museum in Washington, DC.
In November 2018, the Renwick Gallery restoration project received the AIA COTE 2018 Top Ten Award, the industry’s premier program celebrating great design and great performance. St. Cloud Window had the honor of re-creating the original 19th-century window configuration for the project.
“The Renwick Gallery renovation wove complex and robust new systems while preserving the impressive historic design and collection and allowing opportunities for new works to be displayed.” ~ AIA Jury statement
About the Renwick Gallery
From the Smithsonian: The Renwick Gallery of the Smithsonian American Art Museum was the first purpose-built art museum in the country, built in 1859 to the design of architect James Renwick, Jr., who also designed the Smithsonian “Castle” and St. Patrick’s Cathedral in New York City. The building is one of the most elegant examples of Second Empire architecture in the U.S., characterized by the prominent center and corner pavilions, double columns on the façade, and a high mansard roof with ornamental metal cresting.
In 1969 it was added to the National Register of Historic Places, and, in 1971, it was designated a National Historic Landmark in the Lafayette Square Historic District.
Renwick Gallery location
The Renwick Gallery is located on the northwest of the White House on Pennsylvania Avenue at 17th Street N.W and is part of the Smithsonian American Art Museum. The museum features craft and decorative art and a wide range of materials-based art, with special emphasis on contemporary expression.
St. Cloud Window’s Role in Re-Creating the Historic Windows
This project marked the first comprehensive renovation of the building in 45 years. The challenge was to visually restore the original 19th-century window configuration throughout this National Historic Landmark property as well as provide modern technology, performance, and safety.
The window design was a key feature in reversing the negative impact of prior renovations while providing modern safety and thermal requirements. We understood before beginning that the primary focus was to ensure the preservation of the building and provide safe and sustainable building conditions.
In keeping with the original 19th-century window configuration, SCW564i Series impact windows were custom designed and manufactured to match the original 1860s sightlines and also provide blast-proof protection, control ultraviolet light, and prevent moisture exposure to protect the artwork.
A total of 82 fixed and fixed offset windows were created with authentic profiles, while also meeting modern UV, light, security, and thermal requirements, helping the project achieved a 50 percent reduction in annual energy use, while safely welcoming more than 500,000 visitors and 180 million social media impressions in its first six months.
St. Cloud Window manufactures the custom-made aluminum window and door products for new building construction, commercial window replacement, historic window replacement and projects where high-performance acoustic attenuation sets the standard. To learn more, view our full product line of commercial aluminum windows and custom historic windows or request a quote online.