Location: Metz, France
Client: Centre Pompidou
Area: 12,000 m2
FOA Partner in Charge: Alejandro Zaera-Polo
Project Architect: Kenichi Matsuzawa
Design Team: Kazuhide Doi, Friedrich Ludewig
The site of the Centre Pompidou in the outskirts of the city of Metz sits on the other side of the elevated tracks. Our proposal was to design an object idiosyncratic enough to become a reference for the large development that will surround the site in the future.
The programme was organized in a volume as compact as possible as a factor of efficiency. The CPM would be a silo of creative spaces that will intensify the relations between the different chambers and optimise costs, security and circulation. Another important effect of compactness is the extinguishing of a hierarchy between the exhibition spaces and the secondary functions. Finally, the compactness of the proposal enlarges the land which is given to public space.
The skin of the building has been designed taking into account the varying conditions of lighting into the exhibition spaces, depending on their orientation and height, but also reacting to the potential views of the city from every room. The resulting polymorph geometry of the envelope creates a multiplicity of space types and scales to which the art installations can respond. This will provide the curators, the artists and the occasional visitor the chance to establish continuously new relations between the artwork, the space and the city. Clad with a metallic envelope wrapped with a reflective, dichroic film, the skin of the building will not only express the needs of the spaces to provide certain views or daylight conditions for the enclosed spaces, but also create a polymorphic reflection to the urban surroundings.
Like a Mazzochio, -the reflective geometrical figure that Uccello and other Renaissance painters use to locate within their paintings to capture the ambience of the room- the CPM would have played a similar role within the city of Metz, reflecting its landscape into a polymorphic, light spectre that would contribute to provide an alternative perspective of the town.