The Nanjing Museum of Art and Architecture is now finished. Respecting the needs of such a building, Steven Holl Architects created a structure that shelters galleries, a tea room, a bookstore and a curator’s residence. The architects describe the architectural building:”The museum explores the shifting viewpoints, layers of space, expanses of mist and water, which characterize the deep alternating spatial mysteries of the composition of Chinese painting. The museum is formed by a “field” of parallel perspective spaces and garden walls in black bamboo-formed concrete over which a light “figure” hovers. The straight passages on the ground level gradually turn into the winding passage of the figure above. The upper gallery, suspended high in the air, unwraps in a clockwise turning sequence and culminates at “in-position” viewing of the city of Nanjing in the distance. This visual axis creates a linkage back to the great Ming Dynasty capital city.” A large staircase connects the ground to the gallery space on the upper level. An exterior wall surrounds the museum in an unparalleled manner, creating a modern geometric fence which complements the main structure. A place for dreams and art, the Nanjing Museum of Art is a magnificent structure placed in a carefully chosen environmental context.
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