The Impossible Museum: Architecture Prize

Last February, UMA had launched an architecture contest welcoming participants from all over the world. The idea? Designing THE IMPOSSIBLE MUSEUM. The Universal Museum of Art needed an exterior building whose architecture would defy the constraints of gravity and reality, to highlight the unique quality of UMA’s exhibitions. After all, this is virtual reality!

In architecture, designing a museum is the peak of many architects’ work: Frank Lloyd Wright with the Guggenheim, Jean Nouvel with the Louvre Abu Dhabi, Frank Gehry with the Fondation Louis Vuitton, Ieoh Ming Pei with the Louvre, or Oscar Niemeyer with the Niteroi Museum, to take but a few examples.

Temple for the arts, the museum becomes an artwork in itself. As such, it mirrors and shelters one of the oldest human religions: artistic contemplation.

A museum in virtual reality, with a universal reach. A museum with the ambition of becoming the most visited museum in less that 2 years! A place to live art. A place to share and meet. A sublime receptacle for creation.

In this era of digital sharing, two winners have imagined the museum of tomorrow – one that could not exist in real life: they have challenged the laws of physics and gravity, and we’d like to introduce them to you!

Jean-Marc Forest-UMA
Jean-Marc FOREST (France)
The basic volumetry is made up of 2 simple identical forms imbricated and covered with a titanium perforated woven skin.
The 2 forms can be replicated on demand to create extensions (height and/or width).
The interior spaces are made up of cubic volumes of 24x24m by 30m-high to be arranged into exhibition rooms.
The interior spaces are completely obscured in order to have greater freedom of work on interior light.
They are covered with a black polished sheet of stainless steel.
They communicate with one another through vertical and horizontal mechanical circuits/corridors, also covered with a black polished sheet of stainless steel.
Access to interior spaces (museum shop and exhibition rooms) is provided from the entrance hall by clicking on circular points of view.

The Orlovsky project (Russia)

A worldwide museum in virtual reality requires a new form : we have chosen cosmoplasticism, an idea linked to the pyramidal vision of human society, and to the concept of planetary harmony.

To some extent, cosmoplasticism has always been an internet part of ancient artistic and architectural objects: Stonehenge, the Egyptian pyramids, works by Leonardo da Vinci, Raphael or Dali – the spaces they represent always retain a part of mystery, yet they also possess aesthetic qualities linked to the human ideal of a perfect world.

The idea of cosmoplasticism opposes chaos, destruction, and natural disasters, and gestures towards cosmic installations and artistic compositions where a search for harmonious ideals and great-scale aesthetics benefits from 21st-century technological development.

The sphere is a symbol of the earth according to man, while the seashell evokes natural evolution. The general views hint at museum elements: any combination of elevation above the plateau is possible, in order to contain different exhibitions in virtual reality, organized around an ecological life symbol which calls in all the natural elements : air, earth, water, clouds, stones, light…

This museum is a promenade into the intertwining of the human and the natural, an excursion outside of time understood as a three-dimensional space. Such is the Orolvskys’ vision of the Universal Museum of Art.

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