Michael C. Carlos Museum
Michael C. Carlos Museum
Emory University

Michael C. Carlos Museum

Emory University

Historic Preservation and Adaptive Re-Use

The first of several MGA&D projects at Emory University involved historic preservation and adaptive re-use of a landmark law school designed by Henry Hornbostel in 1916 on the central quadrangle of the original campus. Renovations provided classrooms for the Departments of Art History and Anthropology and galleries for the newly formed Museum of Art & Archaeology. To provide a didactic context for the collections being shown, MGA&D employees borrowed from a Hornbostel tradition at Carnegie Mellon’s School of Architecture and stenciled the gallery floors with plans of related buildings, such as the Acropolis in the Greek galleries.  (These were replaced in the expansion.)

Character and Context

The success of the Michael C. Carlos Museum led to a commission to design a  40,000-SF expansion on an adjacent infill site. We thought it was important for the architectural character of the new building to respond to the context and therefore its massing, detailing and materials are contemporary interpretations of Hornbostel’s buildings. The central exterior stair and porch frame emphasize the cross-axis of the quadrangle and are used as a backdrop for University events such as graduation.

Project Details

Project Market(s):


Project Service(s):


Interior Design


Atlanta, Georgia


Renovation & Historic Preservation 22,000 SF

New Construction 40,000 SF

Gallery Renovations  4,000-6,000 SF

Completion Date:

Renovation & Historic Preservation 1985

Expansion 1993

Gallery Renovations 2001-2004

Project Lead(s):

Patrick Burke, FAIA


National AIA Honor Award


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