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Photo: Adrià Goula

Unsuspected Traces of the Romans: Museum Staging in Barcelona

Behind a municipal administration building on the Carrer d’Avinyó, archaeological investigations were initiated during renovation work. The archaeologists discovered the remains of a Roman house built directly at the city wall of historical Barcelona. The ruins, which have now been brought to light, are a connection between history and the present, particularly as part of the old wall now serves as a static support for the new building. The find shows that the family who lived in the house must have been well-off. For instance, the discovery of a series of well-executed, high-quality decorative murals point to a certain prosperity.

Vora Arquitectura took on the challenge of making the built-over Roman domus accessible to the public and integrating it into the familiar government building as a way to show the unsuspected treasures in a museum-like atmosphere. The area with the archaeological artefacts is now the exhibition space. The remaining ground-floor space has been reconfigured in order to create both sufficient space for the administrative foyer and a link to the museum, as well as a double function – the distribution and services offered by the building during the week, but also the antechamber of the historical display.

Domus Avinyó is entered via a run of connected white rooms with perpendicular proportions and varying heights. Each of these rooms lies in a different layer of old Barcino: exterior space, fortification wall, intermediary space – all which have been accentuated by the different stone floor coverings and shallow relief sculptures.

Visitors are taken on a tour that leads through the Roman settlement. In a dark tunnel, stairs lead up to a long platform suspended like a balcony over the rediscovered fragments of the domus. A large mural which once ornamented the ceiling of the house now stands out against the black space. Reflective glass surfaces surround the viewing terrace and multiply the artefacts, which serves to visually enlarge the display. At the end of the tour, visitors return to the foyer of the government building and the loud, busy streets of Barcelona.

Kurze Werbepause

Weitere Informationen:

Exhibitiondesigner: Stoa
Leading Architects: Pere Buil, Adrià Guardiet, Toni Riba
 David Johnen, Joao Ávila
 Eskubi-Turró Arquitectes
Area: 120 m2

Photographer: Adrià Goula

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