Thursday, March 25, 2010

The Folkwang Museum in Essen, (Germany) reopens with new architecture

A partial transcript of an interview to the architect David Chipperfield on the occasion of the opening of the new Folkwand Museum in Essen in Germany is giving me the opportunity to reflect on some concepts regarding experiencing the museum's visit.  When an architecture is airy, has open floorplans and invites to enter it, then the building is a succes, expecially when the construction houses an institution, which its mission statement presumably reads something like .... "art for the community"...
but also the design of the new building, clearly is modernising the institution but not forgetting its roots and the connections to the city.
The one-floor-courtyard-plan and the huge scale glass windows of the façade, are opening the museum to the city in an inviting way: you walking down the street and looking directly to the works of art inside.
Perhaps, this new building could do more (or maybe faster) for engaging an audience than a calendar full of public programs.

Folkwang Museum Essen, interwiew with architect David Chipperfield
From DW-World TV

"Light, airy, transparent", some concepts defining the new building of the Folkwang Museum in Essen, with a collection in contemporary art, mainly paintings. 
we had a double desire in designing it: easy to find your way in, and at the same time to loose yourself.
.... unestructured ways to view the works inside. The circulation is around these courtyards and this give you the oportunity to see really into the collections, so from the front door you can actually begin to see art.  Everything is visible like a little village.

... (there was) another part of the museum from 1960s, we really wanted to embrace it and we borrowed the spirit...
.... everyne can enjoy uninterrupted views, the glass façade has open the Museum to the city, making it a part of every day life.

... and I think we have to counterbalance all of the superficial tendencies, as the world get faster, also the need to slow down is more important and I think that the museum is one of the only places left, apart from reading a novel, where you occupied yourself not with something external, but with something internal. 

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