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Heatherwick Studio transforms Cape Town grain silo into art museum
POSTED 15 Sep 2017 . BY Kim Megson
The technical challenge was to find a way to carve out spaces and galleries from the ten-storey high tubular honeycomb without completely destroying the authenticity of the original building
– Thomas Heatherwick
Heatherwick Studio’s latest completed building, the Zeitz Museum of Contemporary Art Africa (Zeitz MOCAA) has been unveiled today (15 September) ahead of its public opening next week on Cape Town’s V&A Waterfront.

The museum – the largest in the world dedicated to contemporary art from Africa and its diaspora – is housed in 9,500sq m (102,000sq ft) of custom-designed space, carved out of the city’s monumental historic Grain Silo Complex structure.

The design team were tasked with giving new life to the iconic building, once South Africa’s tallest, which had been disused since 1990 and is located on the edge of a historic working harbour, with the famous Table Mountain as its backdrop.

The galleries and the atrium space at the centre of the museum have been carved from the silos’ dense cellular structure of forty-two tubes. There are 6,000sq m (64,500sq ft) of exhibition space in 80 gallery spaces, a rooftop sculpture garden, storage and conservation areas, a bookshop, a restaurant, bar, and reading rooms.

The museum also houses a costume institute and centres dedicated to photography, film, performative practice and art education.

“The idea of turning a giant disused concrete grain silo made from 116 vertical tubes into a new kind of public space was weird and compelling from the beginning,” said Heatherwick Studio founder Thomas Heatherwick. “We were excited by the opportunity to unlock this formerly dead structure and transform it into somewhere for people to see and enjoy the most incredible artworks from the continent of Africa.

“The technical challenge was to find a way to carve out spaces and galleries from the ten-storey high tubular honeycomb without completely destroying the authenticity of the original building. The result was a design and construction process that was as much about inventing new forms of surveying, structural support and sculpting, as it was about normal construction techniques.”

The R500m (US$40.3m, €33.8m, £30m) Zeitz MOCAA project, announced in November 2013, has been created in a partnership between the Victoria & Alfred Waterfront and businessman and conservationist Jochen Zeitz as a not-for-profit public cultural institution.

Earlier this year, a luxury hotel opened in the six storeys above the Zeitz MOCAA, in the grain elevator portion of the silo complex.

Also designed by Heatherwick Studio, the Silo Hotel has 26 guest rooms, including one bedroom penthouse, that are all more spacious vertically than horizontally due to the unique architecture of the building.
The galleries and the atrium space at the centre of the museum have been carved from the silos’ dense cellular structure of forty-two tubes Credit: Iwan Baan
The R500 million (£30 million) Zeitz MOCAA project has been created in a partnership between the Victoria & Albert Waterfront and Jochen Zeitz Credit: Iwan Baan
Heatherwick Studio have transformed Cape Town's disused grain silo complex into a major new museum Credit: Iwan Baan
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NEWS
Heatherwick Studio transforms Cape Town grain silo into art museum
POSTED 15 Sep 2017 . BY Kim Megson
The technical challenge was to find a way to carve out spaces and galleries from the ten-storey high tubular honeycomb without completely destroying the authenticity of the original building
– Thomas Heatherwick
Heatherwick Studio’s latest completed building, the Zeitz Museum of Contemporary Art Africa (Zeitz MOCAA) has been unveiled today (15 September) ahead of its public opening next week on Cape Town’s V&A Waterfront.

The museum – the largest in the world dedicated to contemporary art from Africa and its diaspora – is housed in 9,500sq m (102,000sq ft) of custom-designed space, carved out of the city’s monumental historic Grain Silo Complex structure.

The design team were tasked with giving new life to the iconic building, once South Africa’s tallest, which had been disused since 1990 and is located on the edge of a historic working harbour, with the famous Table Mountain as its backdrop.

The galleries and the atrium space at the centre of the museum have been carved from the silos’ dense cellular structure of forty-two tubes. There are 6,000sq m (64,500sq ft) of exhibition space in 80 gallery spaces, a rooftop sculpture garden, storage and conservation areas, a bookshop, a restaurant, bar, and reading rooms.

The museum also houses a costume institute and centres dedicated to photography, film, performative practice and art education.

“The idea of turning a giant disused concrete grain silo made from 116 vertical tubes into a new kind of public space was weird and compelling from the beginning,” said Heatherwick Studio founder Thomas Heatherwick. “We were excited by the opportunity to unlock this formerly dead structure and transform it into somewhere for people to see and enjoy the most incredible artworks from the continent of Africa.

“The technical challenge was to find a way to carve out spaces and galleries from the ten-storey high tubular honeycomb without completely destroying the authenticity of the original building. The result was a design and construction process that was as much about inventing new forms of surveying, structural support and sculpting, as it was about normal construction techniques.”

The R500m (US$40.3m, €33.8m, £30m) Zeitz MOCAA project, announced in November 2013, has been created in a partnership between the Victoria & Alfred Waterfront and businessman and conservationist Jochen Zeitz as a not-for-profit public cultural institution.

Earlier this year, a luxury hotel opened in the six storeys above the Zeitz MOCAA, in the grain elevator portion of the silo complex.

Also designed by Heatherwick Studio, the Silo Hotel has 26 guest rooms, including one bedroom penthouse, that are all more spacious vertically than horizontally due to the unique architecture of the building.
The galleries and the atrium space at the centre of the museum have been carved from the silos’ dense cellular structure of forty-two tubes Credit: Iwan Baan
The R500 million (£30 million) Zeitz MOCAA project has been created in a partnership between the Victoria & Albert Waterfront and Jochen Zeitz Credit: Iwan Baan
Heatherwick Studio have transformed Cape Town's disused grain silo complex into a major new museum Credit: Iwan Baan
RELATED STORIES
The Royal Portfolio adding 5-star hotel in historic Cape Town grain elevator


The Royal Portfolio is adding a fifth property, The Silo, to its range of exclusive hotels, lodges and villas in South Africa. The Silo, so named because it is being built in the grain elevator portion of the historic Grain Silo Complex, will be situated directly above what is set to become the Zeitz Museum of Contemporary Art Africa (MOCAA) in Cape Town.
Thomas Heatherwick to create new Art Museum in Cape Town, South Africa


The new Zeitz Museum of Contemporary Art Africa (Zeitz MOCAA) in South Africa's Cape Town will be designed by Thomas Heatherwick – marking the architect's biggest museum project to date.
MORE NEWS
Government focuses on regional growth, with launch of £20m culture fund
Britain's minister for arts, Michael Ellis, has launched a £20m fund for culture, heritage and the creative industries to benefit towns and cities across England.
MuseumNext Europe 2018: Don't deflect responsibility on the issue of diversity
Diversity was among the topics up for discussion at this year's MuseumNext conference in London, with Shaz Hussain, assistant curator at the London Science Museum, telling delegates not "deflect responsibility" on the issue.
National Geographic uses augmented reality to create world's first open-air planetarium in Canada
National Geographic has teamed up with augmented reality provider Aryzon to create the world's first open air planetarium, using AR to project images into the night sky for a unique stargazing experience.
Comcast bid rejected as Fox agrees new merger deal with Disney
The Disney/Fox merger is back on, after Fox accepted a larger Disney offer days after Comcast attempted to hijack the deal.
+ More news   
LATEST JOBS
Groups Sales and Marketing Executive
Royal Horticultural Society
Salary: Circa £25k depending on experience
Job location: Wisley, Woking, UK
Head of Commercial Operations
The Silverstone Experience
Salary: £50,000- 55,000 pro-rata per annum + benefits
Job location: Northamptonshire, UK
Chief Operating Officer
Brooklands Museum Trust Ltd
Salary: £60,000
Job location: Weybridge, Surrey, UK
Commercial Leisure Manager - Coastal Attractions
Denbighshire County Council
Salary: £41,846 — £44,697 (plus up to £8,000 relocation allowance)
Job location: Rhyl, UK
Theming Production Manager
Merlin Entertainments Group
Salary: Competitive
Job location: Staffordshire, UK
Operations Compliance Manager
Chessington World of Adventures
Salary: £26,500 - £29,700
Job location: Chessington, UK
+ More jobs  
 


ADVERTISE . CONTACT US

Leisure Media, Portmill House, Portmill Lane,
Hitchin, Hertfordshire SG5 1DJ Tel: +44 (0)1462 431385

©Cybertrek 2018

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