All images courtesy of Moreau Kusunoki Architectes / Guggenheim Helsinki
The winner of the much anticipated Guggenheim Helsinki Design Competition has been revealed, with ‘art in the city’- a dynamic scheme by emerging French practice Moreau Kusunoki Architectes‘ – selected over the five other finalists. Created with a sensitivity to finnish heritage and to the city itself, the proposal encourages people to flow within a new cultural core that is linked to the rest of the urban fabric. The practice’s concept outlines a scheme that connects art with society and embraces the evolving urban, museum and technological requirements.
Composed as a series of connected pavilions, each orientated to respect the city grid, the scheme is anchored by a 45m high lookout tower which hosts a variety of programs and a restaurant on the top floor. The combination of exhibition spaces and outdoor display areas will inherently provide visitors with seamless exposure to the art being showcased. The galleries have been designed to appear as individual entities grouped in a village, while the ceilings are constructed to maximize light penetration while diffusing light subtly.
The volumes will pay homage to the great tradition of timber construction in Finland, where locally sourced materials will be used to limit the transport distances. Clad with charred timber, the material choice echoes the process of regeneration when forests burn and then grow back stronger.
‘We are delighted and honored to have been selected from among 1,715 entries. We are happy to share this victory with all the people we work with: our staff, our partners, and our clients. This great adventure brought us energy, joy, and dreams. The adventure now continues with the Solomon R. Guggenheim Foundation, the people of Helsinki, and lovers of architecture and art.’ — Nicolas Moreau and Hiroko Kusunoki of Moreau Kusonoki Architectes.