It's been a really huge week for BIG. Not only did they just unveil the designs for their new housing project in New York City, but they just won another competition - this time to design Greenland's new National Gallery. The new museum, which will overlook one of Greenland's most stunning fjords, will combine historical and contemporary art in a geometrically perfect circular courtyard building in physical and visual harmony with the surrounding dramatic landscape. BIG teamed up with TNT Nuuk, Ramboll Nuuk and Arkitekti on the winning design, which was unanimously voted for by all jury members.
The project is comprised of a perfect circle projected on to the steeply sloping topography, which will create a continuously flowing gallery of exhibitions (reminds us a bit of the Kazakhstan Library). Constructed of white concrete, the museum’s exterior will patina over time, adjusting to the local weather and the sea air. An inner ring of glass contrasts the rough and tumble nature of the coast and sea, draws in the view and more importantly daylight for most of the exhibition spaces. Below the center of the ring are studio and atelier workshops, which are lit with skylights and horizontal strips of windows integrated into the landscaped courtyard.
BIG and its collaborators are attempting to move beyond the traditional, square box architecture in Nuuk, which ignores the unique nature of Greenland. The melted circle shape of the new gallery is designed to be more in tune with the surrounding nature. More visitors are expected to flock to the area and the waterfront after the gallery is open and will encourage further development of a Greenlandic national identity through art and culture.
“Greenland National Gallery for Art will play a significant role for the citizens of Greenland and the inhabitants of Nuuk as a cultural, social, political, urban and architectural focal point that opens towards the city and the world through its perfect circular geometry and shape,” said Bjarke Ingels founder of BIG.