Gallery: MVRDV’s Speech Bubble Inspired Building Wins China Comic and A...

The entire façade is embossed with cartoon renderings that represent a Chinese vase. The speech balloons can become literal, as texts can be projected on the outside.

MVRDV focuses on achieving excellent energy ratings, and the CAM Museum is no different.  The sleek aerodynamic design creates even wind pressure, and a lower need for air conditioning. The interior is cooled mainly with natural ventilation and adiabatic cooling. The eight balloons are interconnected, and their circular shape helps air ventilation and flow, keeping visitors cool and fresh.

In recent years, comics and animation have made the jump from children’s entertainment to an adult following and fine art. MVRDV’s speech balloon design is both playful and sophisticated, a representation of this balance. The entire façade is embossed with cartoon renderings that represent a Chinese vase. The speech balloons can even become literal, as text can be projected on the outside.

Each of the balloons house different exciting sections of the museum. One holds the lobby, library, three cinemas and the education center. The permanent collection is displayed in one segment, spiraling chronologically around the oval balloon. An interactive section allows visitors to test out blue screens, stop motion animation and other animation techniques. Perhaps the most alluring section is the 3D zoetrope, in which visitors can interact with holographic projections and games.

Hangzhou is the capital of China’s animation industry, and MVDRV’s innovative museum is a true homage and tribute to the rising relevance and popularity to the animation and comic industry.



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  1. thedisgruntledarchitect May 6, 2011 at 11:06 am

    I saw this recently in an online architecture magazine and my immediate thought was that this is initially odd, but the application seems fitting to the fantastic nature of the exhibition content. However, I question how successful the museum will be. Animation and digital arts applications tend to thrive in the digital environment, as do the users and creators- this is a primary online community. Does that community or the art type itself want to be housed in a “traditional” museum application? I think this is a missed opportunity for a progressive and innovative digital environment to be architected to accommodate a museum application. In that capacity, I also think the digital environment will be far more sustainable and green that the built environment in this case. It is fascinating to look at though, thanks for the renderings!

  2. Hong C. May 5, 2011 at 4:11 pm

    Looks like Victor Vetterline’s anime & manga stuff @

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