Costakis Museum & Research Center in Salonica

buildings

The operations of Museum and Research Center are divided in two different, but complementary building volumes. The Research Center is covered by an inclined planted slab, under which its spaces are arranged in a stepped way. The planted roof is accessible and open to the city, offering a green area and substituting a significant amount of the lost ground from the building construction, while the “atriums” in combination with the north directed skylights, ensure natural ventilation and cooling of the building.

The significance of “movement” -one of the main elements of Avant-garde art- is expressed in the relationship between the two volumes, as the one appears to slide above the other, projecting at the same time the linearity of the site, a reference to the movement of road traffic.

Regarding the Museum as a space in constant movement and taking into consideration the ability of readjustment in the way the collection is presented to the public, exhibition rooms are designed to allow the reformation of internal space with the help of large scale kinetic elements. The galleries develop in two levels and are organised in an arrangement of square rooms. In the superior level the roofs of each room are glazed for the entry of natural light, while certain of them can move vertically along with the walls, so that they alternate the internal height. This transformation is possible with the use of hydraulic pumps which move independently each gallery shell, in order to adjust the interior space to the different needs of a “living museum”. Transformation is also visible on the outside, modifying the public picture of the building and allowing the transformation of its form, embodying the parameter of time in the building’s function.

Since the element of movement is particularly dynamic, the overall design refers to the primordial geometrical forms of abstract art (square, circle, triangle, cross), so that the synthesis and the correlation between the two buildings is as clear as possible, without distracting from the simplicity of the two prismatic volumes.