The CaixaForum Madrid is a renowned art center in the heart of the capital of Spain, close to the Museo del Prado, the Museo Nacional Centro de Arte Reina Sofia and the Thyssen-Bornemisza museum.
The CaixaForum is housed in the former Mediodìa powerhouse, renovated and expanded after a design by Swiss architects Herzog & de Meuron, which has soon become a city landmark, easily recognizable by its rusted steel cladding as well as for its famous vertical-garden facade, designed in collaboration with French botanist Patrick Blanc. The center opened to the public in 2008.
Herzog & de Meuron retained only the brick facades of the existing building and designed a largely new 7-story building. As in their design for the Museu Blau in Barcelona, the architects created a covered plaza at the entrance level, to provide a sheltered gathering space for the center visitors and the passersby.
Caixaforum Madrid, north facade; photo by Wojtek Gurak
Detail of the rusted iron facade, photo by Andrés Besomi
The covered plaza at the ground floor with the main entrance, photos courtesy Herzog & de Meuron, and by Jorge Cano
From a functional perspective, the center is divided into two parts, one above and one below ground, separated by the covered plaza.
The two floors located underground accommodate a 311-seat auditorium-theater, multifunctional rooms, service spaces, and a car park; while the levels above ground house the entrance lobby, exhibition galleries, administration offices, a bookshop, and a panoramic restaurant.
The entrance lobby, photo by Mertxe Iturrioz
Longitudinal section drawing
Transverse section drawing
The main staircase of the center, and one of the exhibition galleries; photos by Iwan Baan, courtesy Herzog & de Meuron
Floor plans, levels -1, +1, and +4
Activities at the Caixaforum include exhibitions of art, design, and architecture, conferences, concerts, film screenings, workshops and educational programs for children and families.
The Caixaforum Madrid is fully accessible by people with disabilities and offers a wheelchair borrowing service free-of-charge.
Cover: Caixaforum Madrid, south facade, photo by Wojtek Gurak
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copyright Inexhibit 2021 - ISSN: 2283-5474