New York, NY

Metropolitan Museum of Art, Costume Institute Gala Exhibition


On display at the Metropolitan Museum of Art (the Met) from May to September, the Costume Institute’s 2016 exhibit examined the balance of creating fashion both by hand and with new technology. To support the Manus x Machina exhibit, the institute wanted to transform the Met with a custom domed enclosure inside the building. SGH assisted CW Keller by analyzing the dome structure, developing the timber member sizes and connections, and revising the erection and support sequence to optimize the timber framing. The finished dome provided a canopy over the exhibit’s feature Chanel wedding dress.

Working as a design-build team, SGH and CW Keller analyzed, fabricated, and erected the central dome display. Highlights of SGH’s work include the following:

  • Used CW Keller’s three-dimensional fabrication model as the basis of our structural analysis model, facilitating a fast and accurate iterative process for evaluating geometries and different framing concepts
  • Performed a structural analysis of the dome structure to support the fabric enclosure
  • Evaluated sequential stressing of the inner fabric enclosure
  • Optimized member sizes and connection details considering material yield, constructability, and scheduling
  • Detailed connections to minimize erection time and meet the short project schedule
  • Provided reaction loads for the dome structure to the project’s engineer of record and the installer and designer of the aluminum shoring system that suspended the dome above the exhibit space
  • Collaborated with the erector/contractor for the base structure to incorporate modifications into their plans to help us optimize the timber framing

Project Summary



Completion Date
New Construction
Structures | Advanced Analysis
Culture & Entertainment
CW Keller & Associates, Inc.
Specialized Capabilities
AI & Automation

Key team members