Guggenheim Museum

Guggenheim Helsinki Museum

Each Guggenheim museum location around the world has not only helped to spread access to and knowledge of some of the most important artists and thinkers around the world, but has also consistently used its buildings as a resource to enhance the communities that they are located in. The use of timber as a primary material plays a critical role in helping the building be more ecologically sensitive. Each of the timber elements are actually made up of dozens of smaller regionally harvested pieces of wood, helping to assure that no old growth wood is used while also helping to support the forestry industry in Finland. 

This project calls on the rich cultural connection in Finland to timber as a renewable, versatile, and alluring building material while benefiting the community on all the scales that it is operating.

Typology: Cultural, Art Museum
Location: Helsinki, Finland
Year: 2015
GFA: 12,100 sqm
Client: Guggenheim
Status: Competition
Design team: Allen Sayegh, Stefano Andreani, Ziyi Zhang, Carl Koepcke (INVIVIA)
*Stefano was project leader while at INVIVIA


Along with the other primary materials (glass and steel), the project goal is that nearly the entire building could be reusable or recyclable helping to minimize the buildings ecological footprint. The form of the building itself is inspired by the tradition in Finland, and all over the world, of transporting wood by floating it on water. Like wood floating down a river, the timbers in the building fluctuate between tranquillity and chaos. Where the buildings segments converge they form ‘Log jams’, producing interstitial lobbies that can be used to show larger pieces from the collection, as well as host performances and other public events.

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