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Ica Miami in Florida by ARANGUREN & GALLEGOS ARQUITECTOS SL
April 23rd, 2018 by Sanjay Gangal
Article source: ARANGUREN & GALLEGOS ARQUITECTOS SL
The new headquarters of the ICA MIAMI Foundation emerges with the desire to be an international artistic reference and an icon of Miami´s cultural offer. The museum offers itself to the city, and is conceived within the dispersed urbanism of the “Miami Design District” as a luminous cubic volume, as a “Magic Box”, a “Boite à Miracle”, open on its two north and south fronts through two perforated and reflective facades.
The program of an institution such as the ICA Miami is already an attractive announcement, but why deprive the spaces that host it of a certain degree of seduction?
To construct a space with a certain scenographic character, does not imply resignation to know how to dose what sensations are wanted to model the identity of the new center.
An Art Center is many things. Above all, it is a way to build a vision of the world, create a plot based on the meaning of all its works and all the lines that connect them, even if they are not visible. A Contemporary Art Center is a narrative that is based on the work of all the artists who integrate it and are exhibited in it.
The ICA Miami Museum aims to be a context, a place in which the readings and re-readings of each work are conditioned and enhanced by the space that exhibits them, from the halls to the global character of the building.
To express its contemporary, avant-garde and modern character, it is proposed to build a closed cubic building on its east and west sides and expressive and open on its south and north facades.
The south façade, leans linearly on the street and is the main access of the new museum. It is built with a metallic plane of aluminum triangular geometries, expressive and abstract, in which holes of light are perforated, emphasizing the intended expressive radicality of the proposal.
With this operation, a “weightless space” is generated between the real, the imaginary and the symbolic.
As a “great magnet” it catches us and transports us, with a certain power of seduction towards the interior of the new institution, provoking at the same time curiosity, anxiety and pleasure when visiting it.
The main entrance appears as a transverse passage, transforms into the lobby of the museum and connects us with the sculpture garden, located in the north of the site. The southern facade is metallic, aluminum, bright, solar, mirror and announcement of the events that will be held inside the museum.
As it happens in the work of Lewis Carroll entitled “Alice through the looking glass”, crossing it transports us to another reality, to an uncertain inner space. The south facade is closed, protecting the exhibition halls of the museum from the direct solar radiation. The facade is pierced by luminous small openings that respond to a triangular geometry resulting from a “fracture of the gaze”, evocative of the lateral movements of the strong hurricane winds.
Underneath the metallic plane, floating, a horizontal strip is created on street level, a shadow where the letters of ICA MIAMI appear, large and deep, like the columns that support the building.
With this game of letters a space is built, a gap, an atrium in the street that traps us and leads us inside the museum.
In contrast to the configuration of the southern front, a large vertical glass plane is built on the north facade. It occupies practically the entire surface of the front and allows natural light to enter the exhibition halls at different levels, and also to establish a visual relationship between the interior of the halls and the Sculpture Garden.
This huge plane of glass makes possible the support for installations and temporary artistic creations made with adhesive vinyl on the glass or with different illuminations.
Beyond the north façade, the Sculpture Garden is created as a large open space suitable for events and performances of diverse character.
The rooms for exhibitions are neutral spaces, white, bright, with a sufficient height for installations of large format.
The whole of the museum is completed with an exterior space, a “Sculpture Garden” conceived as a large outdoor exhibition room.
As the new trends advance, the concept of what is art and, consequently, its traditional exhibition space, comes into crisis. The diversity of means of representation requires that these spaces be modified. The museum we propose today must absorb these spatial, dimensional, conceptual (everyday, contextual, mutability), technical and pragmatic needs, with the difficulty that contemporary artworks are constantly breaking new schemes and forms of expression.
ICA Miami Museum proposes in its interior suitable containers for artistic manifestations that are constantly rethinking its limits. They are well-sized spaces, equipped with all the necessary facilities to be open to experimentation and prospecting, capable of trying new ways of exhibiting art and more recent productions.
It responds to a double function: to be a volume that houses and shows works and artistic installations and, at the same time, to be the same cultural object that assumes its dimension of urban reference. Our center of contemporary art aims to be a new urban focus integrated and incorporated into the place, which articulate the various existing pieces and even configures outdoor spaces.
Marc Augé differentiates place from space, anthropologically defining the place as an area which has acquired meaning from human activities that occur in it. Space, on the other hand, is meaningless because nobody feels attachment for it.
The proposed contemporary art museum is not just a free space to exhibit works that arrive completed; it is a space that complements the artwork, or rather works with it. In this sense, the physical space, the immediate external context, the landscape, the flows, that the museum can offer and show, are variables of artistic creation. On the other hand, installations and technical support to achieve specific spatial, lighting and acoustic conditions acquire great importance in contemporary artworks.
Large rooms designed with programmatic and spatial flexibility are proposed for the new ICA Miami Museum. They will be divisible rooms, continuous tours inside and outside, with independent rooms, alternative exhibition spaces, and rooms of vertical proportions and with studied degrees of transparency towards the exterior.
In summary, the new ICA Miami Museum is a new meeting space, an “atrium” that is offered to the city. A new “threshold” between the surprising manifestations of contemporary art that will house, and the new “Miami Design District”, engine of change and urban regeneration of the most avant-garde city of Miami.