Building by Wim Quist

The location marked out for the location of the museum was part of a district where pre-WWII architects and urban developers had been devoting a great deal of thought to measurements, rhythm and materials. Rotterdam architect Wim G. Quist, also known as the museum builder in the Netherlands, was commissioned to build Museon next to the Municipal Museum (designed by Berlage) in a modern style that would match the Berlage concept. Quist succeeded in bringing the construction of the new museum in line with the building of his famous predecessor.

The layout of the museum consists of two intertwining squares. The ground floor houses the temporary exhibition room in the area between the two voids. On the first floor surrounding the voids are the rooms that house the permanent exhibitions and classrooms. The museum has an airy feel, and nowhere is there the impression of being locked in. Every room offers a view of a larger part of the exhibition, allowing visitors to wander between the various areas.

The building is characterised by its wall-like columns that support the floors. 2.20 metres wide and 0.30 metres thick, they flange towards the ceiling. Although the positioning of these columns might seem random, they are in fact arranged in a regular pattern of diamonds and squares. The columns are grey, unfinished concrete. The columns’ positioning marks out the layout of the exhibitions in a natural manner. With its dimensions and brick colour inspired by Berlage, Quist designed a building that does justice to Berlage’s Municipal Museum.

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