In recent weeks, workers have been busy laying giant tiles of Pennsylvania Bluestone on the floor of the Harvard Art Museums’ Calderwood Courtyard, piecing together this space like a colossal jigsaw puzzle. The fine-grained stone, quarried from the border of Pennsylvania and New York, will extend across the courtyard to the surrounding arcades, entrances, shop, and café, continuing up the steps of our new central staircase, creating a uniform surface throughout what we’re calling the “circulation core.”
Our facility is being installed with approximately 13,000 square feet of this stone—the same variety that has historically covered the courtyard’s floor. Because the former floor had been recessed and cordoned off for safety, it restricted access to nearby galleries; now, this area is completely level with the rest of the ground floor, allowing visitors to pass freely through any of the courtyard’s 16 portals.
The courtyard’s bluestone tiles are being arranged in a careful pattern that lines up with the travertine columns that rise from this floor, providing a graceful, solid landing for visitors when we open our facility in fall 2014.