Latitude/Longitude: 19.44069, -99.20469
FR-EE’s design for the 17,000 m2/180,000 ft2 Soumaya Museum pays tribute to its eclectic art collection of nearly 70 000 objects from 15th to mid-20th century, including the world’s largest private collection of Auguste Rodin sculptures. The 150 feet tall Soumaya Museum rises at the heart of the new real estate development Plaza Carson in Polanco, a vibrant and cosmopolitan neighborhood in Mexico City. The museum’s distinct shape and strong presence, creates an identity for the 1940ies ex-industrial area and serves as a catalyst for further cultural development, including a theater by Anton Garcia-Abril and the contemporary Jumex art museum by David Chipperfield.
The surrounding public space is activated through a grand staircase leading to the museum entrance, which serves as an informal plaza for the visitors and locals from the adjacent Carso complex. A skin of 16 000 hexagonal tiles of mirrored steel, references the traditional colonial ceramic-tiled building facades and gives the museum a diverse appearance depending on the weather and the viewer’s vantage point, while optimizing the preservation and durability of the entire building.
Inside, the visitors are first met by Rodin’s The Thinker in a generous white vestibule encouraging guests to explore the museum. Walking up the continuous promenade which spirals through the museum’s six levels, guests will find masterpieces by Van Gogh, Matisse, Monet and Dali among others. The ramp leads to the top floor exhibition hall with a sculpture landscape graciously complimented by the natural light.
The Soumaya Museum’s complex geometry and sculptural shape results from the integration of 28 unique curved steel columns of varying size and shape into the building shell. To achieve cantilevers on multiple sides the structure is stabilized by a system of seven rings located on each floor. Soumaya Museum’s additional public and private areas include a 350 seat auditorium, library, restaurant, gift-shop and administrative offices.
Architect in Charge: Fernando Romero, Mauricio Ceballos
Design Team: Matthew Fineout, Ignacio Méndez, Sergio Rebelo, Laura Domínguez, Herminio González, Omar Gerala Félix, Ana Medina, Ana Paula Herrera, Mario Mora, Juan Pedro López, Guillermo Mena, Libia Castilla, Raúl García, Manuel Díaz, Alan Aurioles, Ana Gabriela Alcocer, Luis Ricardo García, Iván Ortiz, Tiago Pinto, Juan Andres López, Olga Gómez, Hugo Fernández, Kosuke Osawa, Francisco Javier de la Vega, David Hernández, Jorge Hernández, Joaquín Collado, Mariana Tafoya, Eduardo Benítez, Pedro Lechuga, Thorsten Englert, Luis Fuentes, Luis Flores, Rodolfo Rueda, Víctor Chávez, Max Betancourt, Wonne Icks, Dolores Robles-Martínez, Sappho Van Laer, Ophelie Chassin, Elena Haller, Abril Tobar, Diego Eumir Jasso, Albert Beele, Homero Yánez, Cynthia Meléndez, Hugo Vela, Susana Hernández, Gerardo Galicia, Alberto Duran, Camilo Mendoza, Dafne Zvi Zaldívar, Cecilia Jiménez, Ángel Ortiz, Raúl Antonio Hernández, Alma Delfina Rosas, Wendy Guillen, Raúl Flores, Daniel Alejandro Farías, Jesús Monroy, Saúl Miguel Kelly, Iván Javier Avilés, and Cesar Pérez
Area: 17000.0 sqm