FRANKFURT.-At the end of February 2008, an eight-member jury under its chair, architect Louisa Hutton, selected the winner of the architecture competition to expand the Städel Museum. The jury unanimously chose the design by the Frankfurt architectural office of schneider + schumacher. Second prize was shared by the Berlin architectural office of Kühn Malvezzi and the Zurich-based team of architects of Gigon/Guyer.
The occasion for the competition was the planned expansion of the Städel Museum by three thousand square meters of exhibition space and the repair of flaws to the existing museum building, which was originally built in 1878 and has been expanded in numerous stages since. The new expansion will be suited to the urban-planning context and take into account the buildings status as a historical landmark.
We are quite content with the results of the competition, the prize winners, and especially the winning design by schneider + schumacher, said Prof. Dr. Nikolaus Schweickart, the head of administration for the Städel Museum, and are pleased that the Städels extension offers a forward-looking model that sets an example both for the respectful handing of history and for the collections strong contemporary relevance. We will proceed rapidly with the expansion and are currently expecting construction to begin in late 2008 or early 2009 and to be completed by the end of 2010.
First Prize: schneider + schumacher, Frankfurt am Main
A gleaming jewel by day, a tapestry of light at night the architects schneider + schumacher have achieved something special with their design for the expansion of the Städel Museum, stated the competition jury in its summary statement. With their design, which includes a spacious hall for the presentation of art after 1945 beneath the Städels garden, with ceiling openings that create a striking pattern in the garden and provide the hall with natural light, offer a subtle yet striking, indeed powerful, comprehensive example of self-confident integration into the urban-planning context. It is precisely the restraint of the architecture, its mise-en-scène, that demonstrates its respect for the authenticity of the site and offers its architectural surroundings breathing room. The architects managed the balancing act of organizing the large building volume, which will nearly double the Städel Museums exhibition space, in such a way that conflicting requirements could be satisfied: all of the historical layers of the Städels architectural evolution, whether historical landmark or not, remain recognizable; the exterior of the garden wing is untouched; the west wing opens up; the garden remains a green oasis, even with the structure beneath it, that will offer surprising views and stimulate curiosity. And the garden keeps its options open sculpture could be an ideal supplement to the museums offerings inside. Frankfurt will not just be getting a special, even unique new exhibition building but also one that is state-of-the-art as a green building, wrote the judges.
The idea of a subterranean structure was favored not only by the jury but also by half of the teams invited. Along with schneider + schumacher, the Japanese office of SANAA Ltd./Kazuyo Sejima, Ryue Nishizawa & Associates, the Frankfurt architects Wandel Hoefer Lorch + Hirsch Müller, and the New York office of Diller Scofidio + Renfro designed subterranean structures.
In addition to the first prize, the jury awarded two second prizes; they went to the Berlin office of Kühn Malvezzi and to Gigon/Guyer of Zurich.
Second Prize: Kühn Malvezzi, Berlin
The design by Kühn Malvezzi was for two cubic twin buildings with a facade of backlit Stoneglass® panels along Dürerstrasse. The jury found it convincing above all thanks to the self-confident signal of its two cubes and its outstanding integration into the context of the Städels architectural evolution. The special feature of this design, however, according to the judges, is above all its new, truly fascinating foyer, which passes through the glass vaulted ceiling, bringing light into the interior, and the continuous galleries that make the path through the exhibition eventful.
Second Prize: Gigon/Guyer, Zurich
The expansion by Gigon/Guyer supplements the museums garden wing and the west wing to create a configuration of buildings that surrounds the garden space and leaves part of it free to be used. The building wing on the southern end of the property, wrote the judges, is a logical extension of the existing building, a further refinement that seems almost self-evident and takes its landmark status fully into account. On the whole, it is a simple, clear design that promises high-quality spaces, but it did not sufficiently satisfy our expectations in terms of the overall cosmos of the Städel Museum, concluded the jury.
The members of the jury were Louisa Hutton, architect and member of the Bund Deutscher Architekten, Berlin (chair); Dr. Michael Endres, chairman of the board, of the nonprofit Hertie-Stiftung, Frankfurt am Main; Max Hollein, director, Städel Museum, Frankfurt am Main; Professor Jochem Jourdan, architect and member of the Bund Deutscher Architekten, Frankfurt am Main; Bernd Knobloch, member of the administration, Städel Museum, Frankfurt am Main; Professor Arno Lederer, architect and member of the Bund Deutscher Architekten, Stuttgart; Professor Christoph Mäckler, architect and member of the Bund Deutscher Architekten, Frankfurt am Main; Dr. h. c. Petra Roth, mayor, Frankfurt am Main.
The designs submitted for the Städel Museums expansion are distinguished by consistently high ambitions, according to Frankfurts mayor, Petra Roth, a member of the jury. schneider + schumachers winning project for the extension to the Städel Museum testifies to the special quality of contemporary architecture in our city and also demonstrates a sensitive approach to its historical surroundings. The City of Frankfurt welcomes this project in every respect, the mayor stated.
Expansion of the Collection
The extension will create necessary additional space of three thousand square meters for the presentation of art after 1945. Such art was collected at the Städel in a serious way primarily from the 1970s on. The institution owns major works by Alberto Giacometti, Yves Klein, Francis Bacon, Anselm Kiefer, Jörg Immendorff, A. R. Penck, Gerhard Richter, Emil Schumacher, Antoni Tàpies, Dan Flavin, and many more. Very recently, thanks to donations and purchases, the museum added important works by Martin Kippenberger, Carsten Nicolai, Daniel Richter, Jonathan Meese, and others. Many of these large-format works cannot be shown in the existing spaces. The prints and drawings collection of the Städel has also been collecting contemporary art continuously and in the meanwhile holds 1,200 prints and drawings produced after 1945. One of the focuses of the prints and drawings collection is on American art since the 1960s, with works by Andy Warhol, Robert Rauschenberg, Roy Lichtenstein, Claes Oldenburg, Jackson Pollock, Sam Francis, Richard Serra, Donald Judd, and others extensively represented in the Städel.
The extension will house parts of the existing collection of art after 1945. The Städel is also involved in conversations with the DZ BANK, from whose top-flight collection of photographs a portfolio of significant works is being selected for the Städel Museum to expand its collection in the area of photography. It will include works by Richard Avedon, Andreas Gursky, Cindy Sherman, and Richard Prince, among others. The details of the cooperation between the DZ BANK and the Städel Museum will be announced at a press conference at the Städel on 13 March