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.
Opened to the public in 2008, the CaixaForum is housed in the former Mediodìa powerhouse, renovated and expanded after a design by Swiss architects Herzog & de Meuron, which has become one of the city’s urban landmarks. The center is easily recognizable by its rusted steel cladding and its famous vertical-garden facade, designed in collaboration with French botanist Patrick Blanc.
Herzog & de Meuron designed a largely new 7-story building, retaining only the brick facades of the existing building. As in the Museu Blau in Barcelona, the architects created a covered plaza at the street level to provide a sheltered gathering space for both the visitors of the center and the passersby.
Caixaforum Madrid, north facade; photo by Wojtek Gurak
The covered plaza on the ground floor with the main entrance, photo Fred Romero (CC BY 2.0).
From a functional perspective, the center is divided into two parts, one above and one below the ground, with the covered plaza in between.
The two floors located underground accommodate a 311-seat auditorium and 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
The main staircase of the center; photo by Su Westerman (CC BY-NC-ND 2.0).
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 to people with disabilities; wheelchairs are available free of charge at the entrance desk.
Cover: Caixaforum Madrid, south facade, photo by Wojtek Gurak (CC BY-NC 2.0).
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copyright Inexhibit 2022 - ISSN: 2283-5474