"Tianfu Art Museum - MoMa Chengdu"
Designer(s): Wenjun Li, China
Category: Conceptual, Professional
About the Artist
The Competition was organized by the Chengdu Ministry of Culture and the Chengdu Culture and Tourism Development Group in December 2007. Among the invited offices, Wande Wenmai International Architecture Design presented the proposal, which the jury judged as the best solution for the site - 1st prize. Besides the masterplan, which was judged very sensitive to the historical and urban context, their concept investigates the meaning of what a contemporary space should offer and a modern art museum image should be.
Urban and historical context
The site is on the north-west of the central Tianfu Square. The city council is now planning to build a double ring around this square. The first ring will be the new cultural center, including cultural and leisure facilities and museum buildings, the second and larger one will be a crown of CBD style skyscrapers.
Coincidentally the site corresponds to the southwest corner of the (already disappeared) “Si Chuan Gong Yuan”, ancient city wall from the Qing Dynasty. If you dig here, there is a good chance to find some of those old rests.
The concept of the project tries to keep advantage from the existing situation of the surroundings. The basic idea is to enlarge the existing public space of Tianfu Square and make it “climbing” on the roof of the new building. At the same time, the new museum is not thought as one single monumental building, but as a small cultural city made of few smaller blocks.
Two main axis cut the site area creating a comfortable pedestrian island where people can walk away from cars. The new urban situation is also establishing new visual and physical connections between existing parts of the city, people can pass trough the plot and easily come from the Tianfu square and reach the surrounding museums.
The museum blocks (which are four: a restaurant, a music auditorium including some artist ateliers, an administrative building, and the proper museum building) create an arising slope on which people can walk, seat, play, have a rest, enjoy the view to the central square like in a open public street theater.
The whole shape according the function is rising step by step from the earth to the sky, like a jade, or a abstract sculpture of dragon. The ending corner of the building replace the original position of the ancient and forgotten city wall.