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MAXXI Museum

Rome, Italy
1 of 55© Valerie Bennett Photography

The MAXXI Museum is contemporary art and architecture museum built in Rome and designed by Zaha Hadid. The project was initiated by the Italian Ministry for Cultural Heritage in 1998 with a purpose to promote contemporary Italian culture. The museum is intended as a place to exhibit art alongside research workshops researching design, fashion and film. The three keys words which underline the cultural mission are innovation, multiculturalism and interdisciplinary.

The Design

Hadid’s concept for the MAXXI was to create a series of buildings that are seen as more than just an object – they collectively become accessible to all patrons. This lead the design to be expressed through a confluence of lines with the walls becoming the intersecting and demarcating lines throughout the structure – forming both indoor and outdoor spaces.

The plan is aligned within two urban grids of the existing town plan in Rome, by reinterpreting this grid a new geometrical complexity is formed on the site. The walls of the building create major and minor streams, with the major lines making up the galleries and the minor lines creating the connections, bridges and thoroughfares.

The L-Shaped site curves around existing buildings which has influenced the final plan by inflating the buildings mass in some areas and twisting it in others. The outcome is a deep intertwining of interior and exterior spaces.

Technical Requirements

Due to the complexity of the structure, integrated construction solutions were used. The walls of the MAXXI are constructed with self-compacting concrete which were cast on-site to save transportation. This was one of the more challenging aspects of the construction process.

V. Guido Reni, 6
Equation Lighting (London, UK)
Anthony Hunt Associates (London, UK), OK Design Group (Rome, Italy), Studio S.P.C. (Rome, Italy)
Paul Gilleron Acoustic (London, UK)