A slender steel volume parallels the quayside—its proportions recalling the modernist buildings in the surrounding urban context.
Project Name: GUGGENHEIM HELSINKI
Studio Name: LOT-EK
Design Team: Ada Tolla, Giuseppe Lignano, Reza Zia, Virginie Stolz, Marcelo Ertorteguy, Sara Valente
Area: 200,000 Sqft Location: Helsinki, Finland
Type: museum / international competition entry
Consultants: Silman, Structural Engineers Design: 2014
It is opened by two intersecting cylinders, with their timber- clad curves honoring Finnish architectural modernism. The first of these cylinders, at a gentle angle to the quayside, is a pedestrian street that goes through the building, opening its heart to cityscape and landscape.
This opening becomes a public space: an accessible yet sheltered outdoor plaza and indoor cafe, framed by amphitheater-like seating rising up the curves of the timber cylinders. From this architectural crossroads one enters the museum itself. While one cylinder contains urban life, the other contains the museum.
Here, a building-within-a-building, built entirely of local structural timber, contains rectilinear white-box exhibition spaces on two double-height levels. Where this wood-and-white-walled box bridges the open heart of the museum, its walls turn to glass. These window-walls are digitally programmable surfaces— transparent, luminous, cinematic, interactive, and tactile.
In the dynamic interstitial spaces between white-walled box, timber-lined cylinders, and steel-skinned volume are retail, dining, performance, installation, and multipurpose spaces—plus spaces for possibilities yet unimagined.