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Oral History Interview with I. M. Pei

I. M. Pei, architect of the National Gallery of Art East Building, describes his involvement with the building project and its early planning stages, including a trip with National Gallery of Art director J. Carter Brown to visit European museums. He explains the evolution of the building design and the challenges in meeting site and regulatory requirements and gaining the endorsement of government agencies for his design plan. Pei reflects on the relationship between the East Building and the West Building and describes important features of the materials and technology used during the construction of the former. He comments on his relationship with the National Gallery of Art building committee and describes the process of commissioning works of art for the new building. This 87-minute interview is conducted by Gallery archivist Anne G. Ritchie and was recorded on February 22, 1993, for the National Gallery of Art oral history program under the auspices of the Gallery Archives.

Interview with I. M. Pei Transcript (PDF 602KB)