A Curved Museum Dedicated To The Ocean

New York-based studio Steven Holl Architects and Solange Fabião designed a museum in Biarritz, France dedicated to oceanic issues.

Entitled ‘Cité de l’Océan et du Surf’, the museum’s design is based on the dual concept of “under the sky” / “under the sea”. Hosting a public plaza and gardens surrounding the museum’s main exhibition space, the complex merges landscape design and architecture, bridging the building to the ocean nearby. Cité de l’Océan et du Surf was named Public Building of the Year by the 2011 Emirates Glass LEAF Awards.

A statement from the jury reads, “It is designed as a set of simple, low, geometric enclosures, for a permanent collection and exhibition areas with a rolling plaza. These evoke the mystery of the sea and by night glow like fragments. The project achieves a good, seamless connection with its coastal landscape. This is a poetic gestural design sitting between land and sea, and bringing together the best of both.”

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All images © Iwan Baan / Steven Holl Architects

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