Long Term exhibit Astronomy in National Technical Museum

Long Term exhibit Astronomy in National Technical Museum

Architect
Projektil Architekti Studio
Location
Prague 7, Czech Republic
Project Year
2010
Category
Museums

Long Term exhibit "Astronomy"

Projektil Architekti Studio as Architects

Theme: The space is out of space "We think we are seeing the strands of a web-like structure that forms the backbone of the universe," Mike Shull of the University of Colorado explained.


In 2005 the National Technical Museum decided to renovate its original building, which was built in 1938-1941 after Milan Babuška’s design. The decision went further to update the old exhibits, which have been unchanged since the 70’s. Projektil architekti submitted the winning competition scheme to redesign the Astronomy exhibit. For our design, we took inspiration from contemporary theories about the structure of matter in the universe. In the designated room, through use of curving glass panels, we defined empty voids, creating continual space in between, where the exhibits are shown as a sampling reminiscent of cosmic matter, galaxies and stars. As a consequence, the visitor may feel as a star voyager. The important thing is that the enclosure of the void is visually not created by the glass panels, which are transparent, but by the exhibited objects themselves, as they are arrayed at the perimeter of each void. The feeling of the universe infinity is created through the sequence of exhibits as the observer progresses through the display space. He traverses the voids and regards the exhibits – the stars themselves. The number of voids equals the number of themes. The visitor, alone or in a group, finds himself in a specific void surrounded by all exhibits of the same theme. He experiences them intensively. He does not need to walk past them to perceive the context. It is enough just to scan with his eyes. Captions and short films projected onto the glass provide detailed information and facts about each theme. Visitors can operate interactive models, to better investigate the function of the historic devices on display. The first void, in the entrance area, is non-transparent and acts as a transitional filter representing the Earth’s atmosphere. The history of space observation is presented through graphic timelines and digital films. The only solid item presented here is the extraterrestrial 80kg meteorite - the touch of universe. The visitor voyages from the stair hall of the museum through the history of astronomy to land surrounded by the shining stars of the historic astronomical devices on display. Space and time seem to have been transformed.

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