Underground art museum bulges beneath the surface of Helsinki
A revitalization of Lasipalatsi Square in the middle of Helsinki has given rise to a peculiar set of pimple-like domes protruding from its surface. The undulating public space is certainly eye-catching enough, but beneath hides a contemporary new art museum that is hoped to draw a crowd in its own right.
The mounds and humps that now dot Lasipalatsi Square might be mistaken for features of a skatepark, but actually serve as bulging skylights that illuminate the gallery spaces below. Some 13,000 cubic meters (460,000 cu ft) of rock was excavated to make way for these exhibition halls that make up the brand new Amos Rex contemporary art museum.
These curvy gallery spaces have no pillars and can therefore be used quite flexibly. The chimney left intact is a small but towering tribute to the history of the Lasipalatsi building on site, which dates back to the 1930s.
Formerly known as the Amos Anderson Art Museum, the refurbishment by local architecture firm JKMM is part of a €50 million (US$58 million) renovation of Lasipalatsi Square that gives curators a total of 2,200 sq m (23,700 sq ft) of gallery space to work with.
To kick things off, they will host an exhibition titled Massless from Tokyo-based digital art collective TeamLab, the same gang behind the spectacular Digital Art Museum to open in Tokyo last month.
Too see more of the inside and out, have a flick through our gallery.
Source: Amos Rex