Info & Images: Courtesy Henning Larsen Architects |
The Moesgaard Museum is in news again – having won the Civic Trust Award 2015 for demonstrating excellence in architecture and making a positive social, cultural, environmental and economic impact on the local community.
Designed by Henning Larsen Architects in collaboration with Architects Kristine JensensTegnestue, the 16,000 sq. m. museum is uniquely located in the hilly landscape of Skåde south of Aarhus, Denmark. With its rectangular-shaped sloping roof plane that seems to grow out of the landscape of grass, moss and flowers in bright colours, the building appears a powerful visual landmark perceptible even from the sea.
Architecture, nature, culture and history fuse together into a total experience here. With its green roof, bright courtyard gardens, and underground terraces, the museum invites various new and alternative kinds of exhibitions. The project makes an outstanding contribution to the quality and appearance of the environment.
The interior of the building is designed like a varied terraced landscape inspired by archaeological excavations gradually unearthing the layers of history and exposing lost cities. It stands under one great concrete roof, gathering all of the different functions of the building in one big scenic movement.
The heart of the museum – a 750 sq.m. foyer houses the ticket counter, a café and a wardrobe. But mainly, it connects the exhibition halls of the museum and gives access to the many terraces with views overlooking the bay and the surrounding landscape.
Neutrality in the architecture of the exhibition halls creates the perfect settings for the proposed changing exhibitions. Additionally, high standards for logistics, safety and climate control make an ideal environment for large-scale, international exhibitions. The materials used harmonise with the overall expression of the building, with due diligence to acoustics, economy, technical settings, maintenance, durability, colour options and sustainability.
Fundamental elements such as the building's geometry and orientation are considered in order to maximise every square metre – integrating a comprehensive sustainable strategy. The south-facing roof surface (roof facade) forms the calculated basis for this energy-efficient building, which achieves Energy Class 1 status.
Whilst the green roof contributes to decreasing the energy consumption of the building and reduces the overall need for cooling due to decreased heat absorption, the overall amount of wastewater draining from the site is also reduced. The roof slopes downwards to the south, protecting the objects on display from direct sunlight. Connected to each exhibition room, a glass-enclosed area functions as a break room - allowing visitors to enter, but preventing direct sunlight from reaching the objects on display. In these spaces, visitors can have a bright respite from the dark of the exhibition spaces and reorient to nature and sunlight.
An optimal use of daylight in the remaining part of the museum reduces the need for artificial lighting, decreasing overall energy consumption. Around the administrative and educational facilities - which are placed in the rising end of the building - small yards in the building volume allow daylight to penetrate the roof.
Considered to be much more than a monument of archaeological findings, the museum offers a perfect setting for different social and cultural activities: Conferences, concerts, talks and sport events, etc.
Moesgaard Museum was recently shortlisted for the European Union Prize for Contemporary Architecture 2015 - Mies van der Rohe Award along with 40 other projects. Last year, the museum was awarded the reputable and coveted In-Situ Award. Click here to view images of the museum on indiaartndesign.com
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Museum architecture, green architecture, sustainable architecture, green design, institutional architecture, archaeological monument, cultural centre,