The gorgeous Maidstone Museum & Bentlif Art Gallery is a historic Tudor manor house that has been renovated by Hugh Broughton Architects to include a gleaming series of modern extensions. The new glass and copper-clad East Wing extension will ensure the long-term preservation of the museum’s extensive collection, and it allows more visitors to enjoy the museum and the grounds.
The original structure is an ornate red brick Elizabethan manor that was built in 1561. The building has been a museum since 1858, and it now houses a collection of over 600,000 artifacts and specimens. It was important for the Maidstone’s Council to commission a museum extension that would safeguard the longevity of the collection, so they turned to Hugh Broughton Architects
The resulting extension by Broughton, which opened in March 2012, matches the splendor of the historic façade with a brilliant gleaming glow. Gold copper alloy shingles criss-cross either side of the historic entrance with a shimmering fish scale pattern – and each shingle was hand-cut on-site. The golden shingles mimic the artifacts in the collection, as well as the heavy leaden windows of the original manor.
The golden walls are met with glass curtains, which span from the walls to the ceiling, encasing the interior with a transparent shell. The glass sections flood the interior with natural light, lending an openness to the galleries inside.
Broughton’s extension adds a new entrance on Maidstone’s busy High Street, as well as a study area over the garden, new gallery space, and a plant-filled public courtyard that offers a striking view of the historic manor house.
Via Frame Mag