Design Revealed for Hermitage Museum’s Contemporary Branch in Moscow

The State Hermitage Museum, St Petersburg becomes the latest historic institution to launch an outpost, and will open a modern contemporary art branch in Russia’s capital, Moscow.

The expansion plans were anounced last December during the museum’s 250th anniversary celebrations. Now, architects Hani Rashid and Lise Anne Couture, of Asymptote Architecture, revealed their design for the Hermitage Modern Contemporary.

The Hermitage Modern Contemporary will open at Moscow's abandoned ZiL industrial site. Photo: Denis Abramov/Vedomosti via Moscow Times

The Hermitage Modern Contemporary will open at Moscow’s abandoned ZiL industrial site.
Photo: Courtesy of Denis Abramov/Vedomosti via Moscow Times.

According to the New York Times, the grounds of a Soviet-era auto factory have been earmarked to host the 140,000-square-foot and 15-floor building. The space has been occupied, since 2012, by the ZIL Culture Center.

The design features an innovative shrink-wrapped skin stretched over a terraced interior.

“Rather than being perceived as a museum dealing only with the past, the Hermitage is pushing itself forward into the future from its powerful historical position,” Rashid told the NYT. 

“Our whole generation of architects looked to the Russian avant-garde of the early 20th century, which made such a powerful break to the past. We’re working within a tradition that we’re extending.”

The State Hermitage Museum, St Petersburg. Photo: Sasha Petite via Moscow Times

The State Hermitage Museum, St Petersburg.
Photo: Courtesy of Sasha Petite via Moscow Times.

Modern and contemporary artworks from the Hermitage’s extensive three million-strong collection will be shown in the new space, which is scheduled to open in 2018.

The move comes after the Garage Museum moved into its Rem Koolhaas designed space in the Russian capital last month, reflecting the growing demand for contemporary art in Moscow.

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