It only took 10 years after designs were approved for the most architecturally anticipated structure since the Guggenheim to be unveiled in Rome.
On Nov. 12, 2009 architect Zaha Hadid’s latest structure, Rome’s National Museum of XXI Century Art, or MAXXI as it has been nicknamed, was revealed. Although the space has been completed, it remains an architectural shell until the formal opening of exhibitions in spring 2010.
The MAXXI consists of five separate buildings leaning against one another. The beauty of the arrangement is also practical, the multiple buildings can withstand powerful natural shocks, something deemed necessary after the intense earthquake in Italy in 2002. The museum exterior is deceivingly simple, designed with the aim of being ‘fashion-proof’. Conversely, the interior is an intricate phenomenon, done up in blacks, whites, greys and creams, and consists of a massive lobby with steel staircases and a network of galleries. The glass roofs present throughout allow natural light to fill the building. Hadid noted she wanted the building’s curves to “unwind like a ribbon in space.” And that they do. The walls of the new museum not only curve, but also change in depth as they do so.
The stunning curves and sensual lines of the structure guarantee unique exhibitions and we cannot wait to see how museum curators will use the advantageous design of the building to help enhance the art being displayed.
– Alexa P Gray