Amid the Songzhuang Art Museum, several galleries and a number of artists’ studios, the new Spring Art Museum for contemporary art is in good company. The Chinese architecture studio known as Praxis d’Architecture have developed flexible exhibition spaces as a presentation platform for young artists. The museum is located in a suburb of Beijing.
Architect: Praxis d‘Architecture, Pejing, China
Location: Songzhuang, Peking, China
Aside from its generous display rooms for contemporary art, the 4,700 m² museum also offers studios and workrooms for young artists. The U-shaped building and its central courtyard give a nod to traditional local building methods. The courtyard, which is raised 1.6 metres, provides access to the surrounding exhibition rooms. Two sunken gardens open space for natural lighting and ventilation on the ground floor. Darker spaces, such as a lounge and diverse artists’ studios, are found here. The outside of the structure is covered in light-grey tiles, which give it a unified appearance. Jutting areas interrupt the monolithic cubature; the carefully placed windows ensure many different views from the inside out. On the way up, the jutting window niches offer a place to stop and reflect. From the street, visitors enter the inner courtyard via a large stairway. From here, they are led up to the roof, which is completely accessible and can be used as an open-air exhibition space. The roof consists of a series of tiered terraces that allow views of the surrounding landscape. Inside, the tiered roof creates naturally lit showrooms of various heights and atmospheric qualities. Light-coloured walls and floors, as well as suspended ceilings of aluminum latticework, create a unified, neutral surface which functions as the best possible background for presenting works of art. Sculptures, paintings, three-dimensional works – every piece has a suitable exhibition space.