Soumaya Museum

by | 26. Jul 2012

Cultural | Feature
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Photo: Iwan Baan

 

In order to create a new identity for the site, both a strong urban and iconic presence, the Soumaya Museum was conceived as a rotating sculptural building that is both an object and a part of the city. 

The Soumaya Museum is part of a large scale mixed-use urban development on the edge of the Polanco district, one of the most exclusive areas of Mexico City. Located on a former existing 1940’s industrial site the Soumaya Museum – as the pre-eminent cultural program in the area – is a key instigator towards the transformation of urban perception and urban life in the area.

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Photo: Iwan Baan

Its role as an institution provides urban programmatic mixture, activating and intensifying the surrounding public space while promoting the commercial activities in the neighborhood.

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Photo: Iwan Baan

To create a shelter for its collection, the opaque facade is made of hexagonal aluminum modules that minimize exterior openings while optimizing the preservation and durability of the entire building.

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Photo: Iwan Baan

 

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Photo: Iwan Baan

The conglomeration of the individual modules reflects the diversity of the museums’ collection that includes the worlds’ second largest collection of Rodin sculptures, a wing of Medieval and Renaissance Art, and a gallery of Impressionism. This diverse collection is housed in a continuous exhibition space spread over six levels.

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Photo: Iwan Baan

 

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Photo: Iwan Baan

 

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Photo: Iwan Baan

 

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Photo: Iwan Baan

The shell of the building is made of 28 unique curved steel columns of varying size and shape.  The structure is stabilized by a system of seven rings located on each floor. The top floor, with the roof suspended from a cantilever that allows natural daylight in, is the largest space in the museum.

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Image courtesy FREE

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Section Image courtesy FREE

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Circulation Diagram Image courtesy FREE Structural Diagram

The building also includes an array of public and private programs, including: a 350 seat auditorium, library, restaurant, gift-shop, a multi-purpose lounge, and administrative offices.  Connecting the programs is a non-linear circulation zone, creating areas of interaction for users along a common path as they meander through the building, culminating in a naturally lit multi-use gallery on the top floor.




INFORMATION

CITY Mexico City
COUNTRY Mexico
CONSTRUCTION YEAR 2011

CLIENT

CONTRACTOR

PUBLISHER