Munch Museum
© Guttorm Stilen Johansen

Munch Museum

estudio Herreros as Architects

The future Munch Museum is not only a facility to safeguard and exhibit a fundamental heritage in the history and nature of Norwegian culture. It also constitutes a unique opportunity to develop a contemporary museum concept, nourished by a highly significant urban role and historical responsibility as a cohesive element of the community, not only of Oslo but also of the entire nation.

photo_credit ©Adrià Goula
©Adrià Goula

Its ascending itinerary connects the covered public space of the foyer, which houses recreational, commercial, cultural and restaurant uses, with the rooftop terraces/observatory/club, which parallel to the discovery of Edvard Munch’s work offer the different historical strata of the city of Oslo.

photo_credit ©Adrià Goula
©Adrià Goula

This gesture of conceiving the vertical communications system as a public space/ascending vantage point is the essence of the heterodox character generated by developing a museum vertically. There is more, however: on this itinerary the visitors discover other types of facilities, namely restaurant and café, administrative offices, the research library and the education department, which denote a programmatic complexity that goes beyond the conventional idea of the museum as a set of exhibition spaces to be visited and a series of invisible dependencies from which the institution is managed.

photo_credit ©Adrià Goula
©Adrià Goula

The building is scrupulously committed to energy saving and respect for the natural environment, that the Norwegian people require, by means of a holistic concept in which structure, ventilation systems and construction collaborate with each other in accordance with the Passive House concept.A minimal carbon footprint, sustainability, recyclability and maintenance constitute the directives of a building process transformed into an event which is itself centred on experimentation and innovation.The façades, finished in perforated aluminium with different degrees of transparency that give rise to an enigmatic, evanescent perception of the building, which reacts to the slight stimuli generated by Oslo’s climate, thereby creating very different images depending on the time of day; the huge sliding formworks that operate throughout 24 hours; the use of low-emissivity recycled concrete and steel; these and other advances endow the building with its pioneering nature on a number of different fronts.

photo_credit © Guttorm Stilen Johansen
© Guttorm Stilen Johansen

The new Munch Museum, to be opened in the autumn of 2021, will be a dynamic centre for contemporary culture and for a public varying in age and interests (experts, schoolchildren, tourists, art lovers) whom it is hoped will periodically visit the facility attracted by a programme with a wide variety of formats.Its intense activity will shift Oslo’s centre of gravity towards its point of encounter with the fiord, thereby refounding, through culture and the vigour of civil society, the original Viking port that gave rise to the city.

Caption
Caption
Caption
This story is available in multiple languages

Facade design

Bollinger+Grohmann as Facade Engineers

The final façade solution consists of a single back-ventilated layer with corrugated external perforated aluminium panes. This composition meets both functional requirements, such as climate conditions, energy technology, maintenance, daylight, and the needs of a visibly permeable structure linking the interior of the museum with the adjacent Bjørvika Fjord. The west side of the façade is dynamically designed and the most challenging point with regard to energy consumption. The solution here is to modify the placement of the corrugated panels with different degrees of perforation and to use glass with different G-values in the outer façade.

The new Munch Museum in Oslo is close to its completion. On 26,300 m², it will house exhibition halls, event rooms, depots and office spaces. On the basement floors, there will be an auditorium and a cinema, rooms for workshops, readings and concerts as well as two restaurants and a roof terrace. The most striking features of this 13-storey new building are the inclined head towards the opera house and the city centre and a façade of corrugated and perforated aluminium panels, which creates iridescent effects. B+G was responsible, among other things, for the development of a façade concept considering various passive house requirements.

A new museum built for the future

Munch Museum as Client

"Edvard Munch is about not accepting conventional rules, about fighting against opposition, about never giving up. The building is there, it has a powerful presence, and it is part of the city. It says, ‘Okay, here I am. I hold the legacy of the most important artist in Norway’s history, and I gaze entranced at Oslo and the fjord because it is the city and its collective dreams that have built me.’"

- Juan Herreros, founding partner Estudio Herreros

 

A vertical museum

Herreros’s winning architectural proposal is based on the idea of a tower-shaped museum, where the main functions are organized vertically. Sixty metres in height, clad in recycled, perforated aluminium panels of varying degrees of translucency, and with its distinctively leaning top section, the tower is a highly visible landmark from all sides. The large number of gallery spaces distributed over an even larger number of storeys allows for wide variations in ceiling heights and room sizes, enabling optimum spaces to be allocated for both permanent and temporary exhibitions.

The tower, which sits on a three-storey podium, has two zones: one static and one dynamic. The static zone is an enclosed concrete structure, which complies with stringent security, humidity and daylight requirements in order to protect the art within. The dynamic zone, which has an open, transparent façade with views over the city, is where visitors can move between the different exhibition areas.

The architects’ intention is that visitors should discover not only the artworks, but also Oslo and its history. In this way, the building will contribute to establishing strong links between the regeneration of the surrounding urban area and Edvard Munch’s art.

A modern passive house

The structure with its two zones features airlocks to control temperature and humidity at the points of transition between the dynamic and static zones. These systems allow the use of energy-saving, natural ventilation in the dynamic zone. In addition, the enclosed east-facing façade avoids excessive heating during the summer. Overall, very many of the architectural choices are climate-driven.

MUNCH is a prestigious project for the City of Oslo and has been planned in accordance with the FutureBuilt criteria. Such buildings must at least halve their greenhouse gas emissions compared to conventional modern buildings in relation to transport, energy consumption and choice of materials.

Its compact shape, very high-quality windows and partially natural ventilation are just some of the measures that have allowed the building to achieve the desired energy savings.

MUNCH has been built using low-carbon concrete and recycled steel, and its loadbearing structure has been designed with a technical lifetime of 200 years. In addition, the building complies with Passive Building standards. In other words, energy consumption is reduced with the assistance of passive measures such as additional heat recovery, extremely well-insulated windows and excellent insulation. The wavy alumiumum panels screen sunlight effectively, and also reflect and refract sunlight to avoid excessive temperature fluctuations.

The building, its conceptual approach and construction systems, wants to be an expression of the collective engagements of the Norwegian society to the environment echoing its present challenges and the desire for innovation that confidently steps forward into a better future.

In addition to structural factors, a number of measures will reduce MUNCH’s climate footprint. The building is connected to a district-heating system and also to a seawater cooling plant. It also features an energy control system that optimizes energy consumption. The building has no visitor or staff car-parking spaces. Its location very close to the city’s largest public transport hub and the 100 cycle-parking spaces at Edvard Munchs plass will negate any need to arrive by car.

Overall, these measures will ensure that MUNCH has a lower energy consumption per square metre than the building we are leaving at Tøyen.

A cultural building for all

From the start, Herreros has intended MUNCH to be a non-intimidating building, unlike some traditional art museums. Easily entered from the surrounding streets in Bjørvika, the new building will offer art, culture, and eating and drinking venues on 13 floors, plus its top floor will offer some of Oslo’s most spectacular views.

Everyone will find something to interest and inspire them in our rich programme of concerts, literary events and debates, together with painting workshops where children and adults can enjoy making art together.

The staff areas are discreetly visible to museum visitors, in accordance with the architects’ objective of making visible the large group of dedicated professionals who work to conserve and display the art to its best advantage.

- The building is part of a generation of new museums all over the world that are redefining cultural institutions, and that are moving forward from the concept of an historical archive to become venues for social gatherings – places where everyone can meet up and discover something new, says Herreros.

Share or Add Munch Museum to your Collections
Weekend house, Bazel
next project

Weekend house, Bazel

Private Houses
Bazel, Kruibeke, Belgium - Build completed in 2019
View Project