Today, museums are rapidly turning from boring storages of exhibits to places where you want to spend a weekend with your family, meet friends or quietly stroll alone. We tell about the recently opened museums, where everything is fine: both the idea, and the exhibitions, and, of course, the architecture.
The recently opened art space Lafayette Anticipations in Paris belongs to the French trading giant Groupe Galeries Lafayette, in the department stores which are bought clothes, shoes and household items, almost half of the French and millions of tourists coming to France. The space opened in March, but has already become one of the main places for admirers of modern art.
Lost in the bohemian district of Mare, a 19th-century industrial building was restored by Rem Koolhaas himself, along with his own OMA bureau. A specially constructed mobile tower made of steel and glass changes its configuration, adapting itself to the exhibition held in space. In addition to the exhibition halls, the building houses the offices of the Groupe Galeries Lafayette, as well as a souvenir shop and a cafe with organic gluten-free food. In the basement of space, a creative laboratory will soon open, where artists who won a grant for an artist-in-residence program will work.
The world’s largest museum dedicated to contemporary African art has recently opened in Cape Town. The famous London architectural bureau Heatherwick Studio has transformed the historical silo granary into a large 9-storey museum building on the picturesque Victoria and Alfred waterfront.
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The silo that was abandoned since 1990 stood on the waterfront, like a monument to the industrial past of Cape Town, once the tallest building in South Africa, but has now gained new significance through transformation into a museum. The galleries and atrium in the center of the museum are located in a space cut from forty-two concrete pipes, of which the building consists. On the roof there is a sculpture garden, in the cellars there are vaults, and on the floors there are exhibition spaces, a bookstore, a restaurant, a bar and reading rooms. In the museum there will also be educational centers and institutes of costume, photography, curatorial skill and performance.
The Museum of Contemporary Art in Athens opened for more than 10 years, moving from place to place. Recently, the doors of the museum’s permanent residence finally opened, having overcome all financial and bureaucratic difficulties. The EMST building used to be a huge brewery Fix. However, in 2014, several architectural bureaus, who won the tender of the Greek Ministry of Culture, engaged in its reconstruction. Studios 3SK Stylianidis Architects, I. Mouzakis & Associate Architects, Tim Ronalds Architects and Kalliope Kantanzaglou upgraded the building and turned it into a modern museum.
Two historical facades overlooking the streets of Singra and Frantsi, the architects left unchanged, slightly restoring the other two sides of the building. Inside the whole interior is made in calm white color. On the first floor of the museum there is a café with panoramic windows, and on the roof there is a large observation deck overlooking the whole city. While there are only temporary exhibitions, but very soon two floors with a permanent collection of the museum will open to the public.
The Paris Museum of Yves Saint Laurent opened almost simultaneously with the museum in Marrakech. Unfortunately, the main inspirer and implementer of both projects, the beloved and close friend of designer Pierre Berge died shortly before the opening of both museums, not having seen the fruits of his work.
The premises for the Parisian museum quite logically chose the headquarters of the brand Yves Saint Laurent on Avenue Marceau. The interiors were answered by the famous Parisian architect and designer Jacques Grange, and Natalie Krigner, who worked, inter alia, to reconstruct and reform various museum spaces, was engaged in the scenography. Designers also restored the studio of Yves Saint Laurent, where the designer worked for many years. In the museum’s exposition there are more than 5000 costumes created by the great couturier, his sketches, memories and personal belongings.
With Marrakech at the great couturier Yves Saint-Laurent is connected a lot, he often came here with his partner Pierre Berger. In 1980 they together bought out the abandoned, once beautiful Majorelle garden and returned it to the former well-groomed state. Today it houses the Berber Museum.
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The building of the museum Yves Saint Laurent built the architectural bureau Studio Ko. Combining the smooth and sharp forms, they built a brick, rough exterior palace. “As a lining in the case with a jacket, the interior is completely different – velvety, smooth and shining,” – noted the architects. In the courtyard of the museum there is a cafe Le Studio, reminiscent of the designer’s workshop. There is also a small swimming pool, where you can relax under the hot Moroccan sun.
It would seem that the great Jean Nouvel has gone out of sight, but no: he recently completed the project of the Louvre on the island of Saadiyat Abu Dhabi in the Persian Gulf. Saadiyat Island, the size of a quarter of Paris, has become a real cultural and architectural oasis of the emirate. Here are also the National Museum of Zayed, built by the Norman Foster Bureau, the Guggenheim-Abu Dhabi work of Frank Gehry, the Tadao Ando Maritime Museum, and the Zaha Center for the Arts Hadid Architects. The main idea of the new creation of Jean Nouvel is a combination of geometry and light. Through the dome of the museum with a diameter of 180 m, light enters the building. The weight of this structure of aluminum, stainless steel and iron – 7,500 tons – is held by four inconspicuous pillars of the average person’s eyes. Under the dome is a whole museum city with many galleries and spaces designed for permanent collection and temporary exhibitions organized in conjunction with world art museums.