5 Museum Buildings

5 Museum Buildings

Striking, innovative and conceptually rich, this selection of cultural institutions combines form and function to offer dynamic settings for the appreciation of art and design.

Turner Contemporary, Margate, by David Chipperfield Architects

Inspired by English painter JMW Turner’s interest in the location, this structure is clad in translucent glass, enabling its interior to flood with light in response to daily and seasonal changes. Offering striking sea views, the gallery connects audiences to both the wider landscape and the history of art.

Vitra Design Museum, Weil am Rhein, by Frank Gehry

The first building by the world-renowned architect in Europe, Vitra is made up of clashing sculptural forms. Entirely clad in monochrome, it combines angular protrusions with curved elements. Gehry’s list of cultural projects is extensive, including the Guggenheim Museum, Bilbao, and Louis Vuitton Foundation, Paris.

MAXXI Museum, Rome, by Zaha Hadid Architects

Demonstrating Hadid’s (1950-2016) signature focus on fluidity, this building offers a continuous flow and adaptable space. Designed to reflect the fast pace of modern life, its fragmented geometry results in a multiplicity of perspectives, whilst retaining structural links to the historic surroundings.

Guardian Art Center, Beijing, by Büro Ole Scheeren

Guardian Art Center is a multifunctional space, operating as a museum, auction house and cultural centre. This dynamism is reflected in its design – a flexible location for hosting exhibitions and events year-round.  Providing a new hybrid concept, it is paving the way for a new kind of art space.

New Museum, New York, by SANAA

This playful structure comprises a series of stacked cubes, crafting a visually-arresting and innovative silhouette that both stands out from and responds to the surrounding buildings. The Tokyo-based firm is led by Kazuyo Sejima – who is known for projects including the  Sumida Hokusai Museum.

1. Louis Vuitton Foundation, Pierre Châtel-Innocenti.
2. Turner Contemporary, Margate.
3. Vitra Design Museum. Image by Thomas Dix.
4. MAXXI Museum, Rome, Getty Images.
5. Guardian Art Center by Ole Scheeren © Büro Ole Scheeren. Photo: Iwan Baan.
6. New Museum, New York.