National Gallery, Washington, D.C.

Most people go to a museum to look at Art. Being a wood guy, it’s the floors that often draw my attention first – then the art, of course. That was definitely the case during my recent visit to the National Gallery in Washington, DC.

John Russell Pope specified 150,000 ft.² of a 3-layer, balanced construction, quartered and rift white oak for this landmark building. This was the preferred method of building a wide plank floor in the first half of the 20th century, and it is the same construction that we use to make Virtu Flooring today.

Here are those floors after 80 years  - foot worn and showing the patina of age. Spectacular floors. No wonder the guards asked me what I was doing looking down, instead of looking at the art on the walls.

 

  Cezanne’s Harlequin, with 3 layer floor

 Cezanne’s Harlequin, with 3 layer floor

 Masterworks above and below

Masterworks above and below

 A fitting setting for art

A fitting setting for art