Designed by Henri Gautruche and developed by the architect and interior designer Michel Dufet, the Great Hall opened in 1961, for the centenary of the artist's birth. This initial extension of the exhibition area marked an important step in the life of the museum.

A vast concrete nave housed Bourdelle's monumental work, with large plaster models arranged in a striking display. This "modern temple" was connected to the heart of the museum - the old studios, the apartment - by a corridor made of bricks from the artist's birthplace, Montauban.

The arcade of this peristyle opened onto a sculpture garden, where visitors could wander among Bourdelle's most famous bronze statues.