'Cloud Column' sculpture set to make dramatic debut at MFAH

Miya Shay Image
Monday, May 14, 2018
'Cloud Column' sculpture set to debut in May at MFAH
'Cloud Column' sculpture set to debut in May at MFAH

HOUSTON, Texas (KTRK) -- The jets of water are on, the jasmine is planted along the rooftop garden and the 'Cloud Column' is polished for the perfect selfie moment.

In other words, the first phase of the dramatic expansion to the Museum of Fine Arts Houston is ready for the public's eye.

"It's a beautiful building," Houston businessman and philanthropist Richard Kinder said. "It will literally serve thousands of students now, and into the future of our art school."

Kinder was among the list of high-profile supporters who helped launch MFAH's Phase I opening.

Even though the building that bears his family's name will not be finished for another two years, Kinder is excited about the other elements that are ready for the public to enjoy.

One element is the dramatic BBVA Compass Rooftop Garden and event venue.

"I'm sure every single family in Houston will find something here," said BBVA Compass CEO Onur Genc. "It's a new complex. The roof top garden is one part of it. But the whole complex is going to be one part of the attractions to this city."

The most famous element of the expansion is the 'Cloud Column,' which is a bean-like sculpture that has sparked a debate between Houston and Chicago.

Similar to Chicago, Houston now has its own "Bean" sculpture.

Chicago's 'Cloud Gate' is a different sculpture by the same artist, and has drawn much comparison between the two cities' boosters.

"I love the Chicago sculpture. I think it's fantastic. And I love the Cloud Column," said MFAH director Gary Tinterow. "I think it's just what we need for our city. They're different."

The 'Cloud Column' and the Brown Foundation Inc., Plaza will open to the public this weekend. The Plaza includes a series of water jets that children and pets are welcome to splash in.

RELATED: Monumental "Cloud Column" sculpture similar to Chicago's "Bean" now at MFAH

Houston gets its own version of "Bean" sculpture at MFAH