New architecture of museums: 9 striking examples


The museum has long ceased to be just a treasury of works of art. The futuristic architecture of many of them itself becomes an art object.

Naga Museum

Sudan (2008)

The Museum in the Middle of the Desert is dedicated to fifteen temples erected in the ancient city of Naga, once an important point on the way from the Nile into the desert. Its outlines repeat the famous temple of Amun-Ra in Luxor – the more famous monument of the ancient Egyptian civilization.

This tiny museum has no crowds of visitors. Lost in the middle of the Sudanese desert, on the territory of the ancient city of Naga, which flourished in the II-III centuries BC, it seems to be trying to disappear from our eyes. Architect David Chipperfield's team wanted to make it free, like a mirage – and built a 1200 square meter ghost museum. m, using only concrete from local sand.

The emergence of such an institution on African soil, in principle, seems to be a myth – and this is another confirmation that the creation of self-sufficient museums, whose task is not so much to attract tourists as an architectural manifesto, is becoming trend.

Yves Saint Laurent Museum

Marrakech (2017)

The facade of the museum, designed by Studio KO, is decorated with red brick lacy masonry. The building combines modern architectural trends and features of Moroccan culture, and only local materials were used during the construction.

The Yves Saint Laurent Museum, a French avant-garde project from Studio KO, opened in Morocco last year. And on the other side of the world, in Oslo, the new Edvard Munch museum, like a dozing iceberg, tilts its glass floors, preparing to receive the artist's collections bequeathed to the city after his death in 1944. In the capital of Cantabria (Spain), the city of Santander, a new building of the Botín cultural center, designed by the Italian architect Renzo Piano, has been erected, as if cut in half by a central floating platform.

Read more about the project in a separate article here.

Museum of Art Nantes (founded in 1804, reconstructed in 2017)

The expansion of the Museum of Art is carried out by the British bureau Stanton Williams. On this occasion, he even changed the name. Forget the Museum of Fine Arts – now art needs no definition!

The Pingtan Museum of Art

China, Fujian (2011–2018)

A stingray-like art museum designed by architects MAD. Three man-made “hills” form an island with an area of ​​40,000 square meters. m, inside which there is a suite of cave halls.

Museum of Contemporary African Art

Cape Town (2017)

This building, built in 1924, is still considered the tallest structure in the world. sub-Saharan. To create 6,000 sq. m of exhibition space for the collection put together by former Puma CEO Jochen Seitz, Thomas Heatherwick rebuilt the old silos.

The facades of the building are decorated with convex mother-of-pearl discs, which reflect the rays of the sunset and the glare of the water. In Cape Town at this time, the construction of the Seitz Museum of Contemporary African Art, a creation of the London Heatherwick Studio, was completed. The British architect Thomas Heatherwick revived the dilapidated grain storage built in 1924. A glass-roofed atrium, similar to a Gothic cathedral, was created on the site of 42 silos and resembles a huge grain that miraculously sprouted on the South African coast.

BÓTIN Arts Center

Santander (2017)

Two buildings of the new Arts Center, connected by galleries with glass floors, are nine meters above the water. According to Renzo Piano's idea, the museum should become a continuation of the landscape – a park designed by architect Fernando Caruncio and the Atlantic Ocean.

Comic and Animation Museum

China, Hangzhou (2012)

The MVRDV agency was inspired by the “bubbles” of lines in comic book windows. There is no route and order of viewing the exposition, but full immersion in the world of the ninth muse.

The project of the MVRDV agency, created for the Museum of Comics in Hangzhou, China, is also fascinating. Eight buildings in the form of recognizable dialogue “bubbles” are molded to each other like eggs – fragile and cozy. Zaha Hadid Architects and MAD Architects also favor flexible shapes inspired by nature: the Shanghai Oriental Art Center and the Pingtan Museum of Art are reminiscent of huge marine life.

Art Museum Basel (founded in 1980, renovated in 2016 )

Another expansion, this time for the Museum of Fine Arts in Basel, carried out by the architectural studio Christ & amp; Gantenbein. The harsh rustication of bricks gives the ensemble a dynamic, powerful and plastic at the same time.

It seemed that a passion for concert halls and philharmonic societies – in Paris, Hamburg, London – would overshadow museums. Nothing like this. The existing ones are developing and expanding their areas, such as the Nantes Museum of Fine Arts, the Victoria and Albert Museum in London, the Tate Modern, the Basel Art Museum, and new ones appear everywhere – even in the most remote, restless and uncrowded places of the world.

Birzeit Palestine Museum (2017)

International an architectural competition for the design of the building, announced in 2011, was won by the Irish bureau Heneghan Peng Architects.

Around the world, new museums dedicated to contemporary art are bringing art back to the regions it once abandoned. This is happening in the capital of Iraqi Kurdistan, Erbil, and in Palestinian Birzeit: despite the unstable political situation, new institutions are emerging here, giving hope for a peaceful future.

Located on the western bank of the Jordan River, amid undulating hills, the museum building is receding highlighting the landscape. Currently the museum has no collections and is empty.

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