Groleger Arhitekti's museum revitalises plaza in Ljubljana
A competition-winning project was chosen for an ambitious cultural development of the ex-army barracks area of Ljubljana dating back to the late 19th century, which foresaw the restoration of the protected historic structure incorporating contemporary requirements, transforming it into it into a venue for cultural events - the city's future museum complex - a new cultural centre.
It was important to maintain the original street façades respecting the guidelines of the historic preservation authorities, in contrast the courtyard façades where treated more freely; removing the central part and adding a new element resulted in additional square meters and a new layer of history.
The new part is through all floors linked with the existing building: the exhibition spaces spread inside the original structure, making the interior visually continuous and flexible.
Hanging on powerful steel masses, the addition with the collage-like wall appears transparent during the day and glows lantern-like at night.
Many small but diverse parts form together the complex programme of the Ethnographic Museum, which is reflected in the appearance of the new courtyard façade consisting of small rectangular fragments framed in the external structure of the old building.
The façade pattern repeats on the entrance flooring and inner façades.
A sense of welcomeness and spatial continuity is achieved with the new double height entrance hall which is bearing a double role: vertically it’s a tree of life with different scenes of daily life, horizontally it acts as a visual connection with the surrounding – seen from the courtyard the view stretches all the way to the nearby green Tabor.
Interiors are characterised by an engaging use of different materials, textures and colours.
Designed as a public forum with a rectangular opening in the floor, the ground floor level represents with its gentle slope a connecting element with the old town of Ljubljana (all rivers flow into the Ljubljanica).