Guggenheim Helsinki

LOCATION: Helsinki



Matías Imbern

Agustina González Cid

Andrés Acosta

León Carpman

Federico Iocco

Eugenio Tenaglia Giunta



Manuel Bianchi Yasci

Julio Casaccia

Mailen Capobianco

Ignacio Escalante

Facundo Rodriguez Nielsen

Gonzalo Montoya



Str. Engr. Gustavo Bordachar


YEAR 2014





Since the Museum demands a large City investment, it should be used as much as possible, combining a set of different activities. Therefore, the whole ground floor is conceived as a community place that is owned by the Museum but used by everyone. Factually, the new Guggenheim is a public space, open for Helsinkians and the world’s citizens.


The Finnish weather demands for an enclosed public place to allow people’s encounter. A Second Nature that can recreate the feeling of being outside, in the streets, with the comfort of being inside.The interior cityness quality of the public space is provided by the contrasts between the openness of a wide variety of public programs and the closeness of the private parts. Consequently, the project works as an inductive urban infrastructure, attracting Helsinkians to interact at the Museum on a daily basis.


The new Guggenheim becomes much more than just a museum. It is not only a place to contemplate art but most importantly a place to share, to read, to connect, to enjoy, to rest, to get together.





The building behaves as an indoor environment that converge with Helsinki’s needs by creating events, hosting parties, selling food, projecting movies and promoting art. Morphologically, the proposal seeks to avoid being a foreigner in Helsinki. Both, materiality and formal strategy, were carefully chosen in order to blend with the existing architecture of the city, respecting its historical tradition.


Three materials are used to substantiate the key elements of the project: brick panels for the exterior skin, that combine with the port buildings; Finnish wood in the interior Public Space, to make a warm and comfortable environment; and white plaster panels in the exhibition galleries, to enhance flexibilityand freedom to art.





After defining a massing containment that matches the site urban requirements, the generative geometry of the building is raised from an interpolated grid. Then, the programs are extruded and some of them raised, providing the ground floor with free space that gets attached to the streets becoming a continuous open space.


The museum is structured by three main elements: the public platform, the programmatic units and the glass/wooden roof. Each unit has a different height responding to their internal program. Then, the roofs are designed according to the exterior requirements: natural lighting and rain water drainage. The space in-between the units is used as a mind-freshener that replaces the doorstep as a traditional separation from one gallery to another. This space enhances the appreciation of different collections preventing mental saturation or contamination. The fragmentation of the galleries also allows for multiple configurations, conceiving each one as a diferent world. This system gives independence to the exhibitions and the possibility of re-arranging them in many possible ways.





Although the galleries are mainly set inside the programmatic units, there are also exhibitions in the public space, underneath the boxes. These pieces of art are open to the public, as part of the free exhibition. The depressions and the moving platforms provide the artists different angles to set multiple perceptions of the art pieces. Additionally, the central Atrium offers contemporary artists the chance to design an exhibition taking advantage of its grand scale.


Finally, the public ground floor follows the idea of blending art with the public realm, inviting people to come in, even if they are not buying a ticket. The Guggenheim Helsinki blurs the line between people and art, while connecting them.