Studio Libeskind Unveils Design for New Modern Art Center in Lithuania

The concrete cuboid design dazzles.

The cuboid shape combines contemporary design with locally sourced materials. Photo: DeZeen

Studio Libeskind released images and plans for the design of the Modern Art Center (MAC) in Vilnius, Lithuania.

The US-based company founded by Daniel Libeskind was commissioned by art philanthropists and museum co-founders Viktoras Butkus and Danguole Butkiene to design a building to house their 4,000 piece collection of Lithuanian modern and contemporary art.

The project is being funded by Lithuanian art philanthropists Viktoras Butkus and Dangle Butkiene. Photo: DeZeen

The project is being funded by Lithuanian art philanthropists Viktoras Butkus and Dangle Butkiene.
Photo: via DeZeen

The museum, which is set to open in 2019 and will be free to the public, will include works starting from 1960, including several important artworks from the country’s Soviet era.

Libeskind unveiled the angular cube design which includes a large cut-out making way for a spacious terrace and garden. The design is rooted in the past through the choice of traditional, locally sourced materials, yet retains a distinctly contemporary shape.

Located opposite the Lithuanian capital’s old town, the 3,100 sq. meter (10,170 sq. feet) museum will occupy a prominent newly created public plaza.

Large windows flood the interior with natural light. Photo: DeZeen

Large windows flood the interior with natural light.
Photo: via DeZeen

The building will be flooded with natural light through floor to ceiling windows by the courtyard space, providing ideal art-viewing conditions.

Visitors entering the museum will be greeted by a triple-height entrance followed by a double-height lobby giving way to a 1,000 sq. meter (3,280 sq. feet) open-plan exhibition space.

A café, bookshop, classrooms for educational programs and an auditorium will also be publicly accessible. Staff can look forward to working from spacious offices alongside storage space for the institution’s holdings.

The design includes a new publicly accessible plaza in the city center. Photo: DeZeen

The design includes a new publicly accessible plaza in the city center.
Photo: via DeZeen

“The modern Art Center not only creates a home for this extraordinary collection, but the design connects the galleries to the street and the urban fabric—giving the citizens of Vilnius a new cultural center infused with public space,” Daniel Libeskind told DeZeen, explaining his vision.

Museum co-founder Viktoras Butkus said, “Libeskind’s work is expressive, innovative, and, most importantly, has the power to tell the story of the past while connecting to the future of the city.”


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