The site for the National Museum of Contemporary Art project is adjacent to a rich cultural area, which includes Gyeongbok palace (one of the royal palaces in Seoul), Bukchon traditional village and galleries located along Samcheong-dong Street (Samcheng-dong is an administrative district of Bukchon traditional village).
Therefore, the approach to this project should not be limited to the design of a beautiful building; rather, creative and far-reaching ideas are required to preserve the cultural value of Seoul as a whole, to enliven a new community of sharing art and design, and to create an atmosphere in which to express the sprit of contemporary art.
Kunwon Architects proposed an artificial ground called 'Plateau', standing at 12 m tall, in order to help visitors experience the dramatic scenery of Gyeongbok palace and Bukchon village. At the same time, the space below the limited ground is designed for installation and performance art.
The principal concepts of Kunwon Architects' design are meta-plateau, meta-landscape, meta-exhibition and meta-museum, which reflect critical thoughts about the potential indigenous scenery of Seoul, the preservation of the street façade of Samcheong-dong Street, the diversity of contemporary art and the revelation of what is 'contemporary' by showing a clear contrast between preserved existing architecture and newly expanded spaces.