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Kunsthaus Graz

contributed by 303 dpr_ barcelona, 20 April 2009


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Description Kunsthaus Graz:

On the banks of the river Mur, on the corner of the Südtirolerplatz and the Lendkai, Graz has a new architectural landmark: the Kunsthaus Graz. The designers of this project, the London architects Peter Cook and Colin Fournier, created an impressive synthesis which unites their innovative design language with the historic setting of this urban district along the Mur. The aesthetic dialogue between the new biomorphic structure on the bank of the Mur and the old clock tower on Graz’s famous Schloßberg (Castle Hill) is the trade-mark of a city aiming to create a productive tension between tradition and avant-garde. In content as well as from an urbanistic point of view, the new Kunsthaus Graz acts as an interface  between past and future. On the occasion of the European Cultural Capital 2003 activities, the City of Graz was giving itself the Kunsthaus, a gift for the future.

The blue shimmering Kunsthaus floats above the glazed ground floor like a bubble of air. Its soft forms fuse organically with the older buildings on the adjacent lots. The nozzles, the prominent skylight openings sloped northward for ideal lighting, emerge from the plexiglass skin. On the upper floors the 23 metres high new structure is linked via bridges to the so-called Eisernes Haus whose cast iron construction which is under monumental protection—the oldest in Central Europe—has been carefully and skilfully renovated in the course of the construction of the Kunsthaus.

The glazed ground floor is a meeting place for artists and art enthusiasts. It has two main entrances, one facing the Lendkai and the other the Südtirolerplatz. This floor is a versatile space with information, communication and entertainment facilities: the Medienkunstlabor as well as the reading and media lounge, the art bookstore/museum shop, a 24-hour café; the large multipurpose event space lying at the rear of the building can be linked to the café, expanding it into one vast public area.

On a 30-meter-long travelator known as the pin, visitors can penetrate  the skin of the mysteriously shimmering bubble, cut through the area designated for children and young people (space 03), and land at the level of the first exhibition area (space 02).

In terms of urban design, the building is intended to have a major impact on the regeneration of the western half of the city which has until now been relatively underprivileged compared to the Eastern side which contains the major public buildings, universities and museums. Cultural institutions, particularly museums of modern art, have the remarkable ability, if made appealing to the public, such as the Pompidou centre in Paris, the Guggenheim in Bilbao or the Tate Modern in London - also located on the “wrong” side of the river - of acting as powerful catalysts of change and symptoms of this urban transformation are already noticeable.

Published on the paperless book
Pages 11-13


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kunsthaus Graz, Austria

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Comments to Kunsthaus Graz:

how is it possible to add information about this project? I have for example all the plans of it on my hard drive.

commented by User_profile_mini_square vozer, 16 October 2011

how i need a section of this building for a homework at the university...
commented by User_profile_mini_square bugii, 10 December 2012

anonymous  [login]

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