benthem crouwel architects completes stedelijk museum in amsterdam
benthem crouwel architects completes stedelijk museum in amsterdam benthem crouwel architects completes stedelijk museum in amsterdam
sep 08, 2012

benthem crouwel architects completes stedelijk museum in amsterdam

dutch firm benthem crouwel architects are responsible for the recent renovation to the stedelijk museum located in amsterdam. originally designed by a.w. weissman, the building is known for its palatial rooms, natural lighting and, in particular, the impressive staircase adorning the core of the space. these native elements have been preserved, as well as the characteristic white coloring introduced by former director willem sandberg. the current structure is not only left almost completely unsullied, but more proudly flaunted by lifting part of the new volume higher and submerging the remainder underground.

image © john lewis marshall and jannes linders / all images courtesy of benthem crouwel architects



the entry to the stedelijk museum has been relocated to the open area of museumplein filling a spacious translucent extension. the fluid white structure above the entrance is affectionately termed ‘the bathtub’ featuring a sleek organic aesthetic composed of reinforced fiber, complemented by a canopy audaciously extending out into the cityscape.

the seamless architectural sculpture soars across the city scape
image © john lewis marshall and jannes linders



with the original edifice as a backdrop, the new seamless construction becomes the commanding symbol representing the stedelijk museum. next to the entrance, a museum shop and the restaurant are located in the transparent volume on ground level. these are accompanied by a knowledge center, a library and a large exhibition hall of 1100 m2. two exhibition spaces are linked by two escalators in an enclosed tube-like skin, through this, a visitor is able to cross the entrance area without leaving the exhibition passage and also without disturbing public functions – allowing guests to remain within the distinctive atmosphere of the museum.

two exhibition spaces are linked by two escalators
image © john lewis marshall and jannes linders



the interior of the old and new spaces are indistinguishable, making the otherwise powerful contrast between the two barely noticeable when moving through the museum. the weissman building is brought to life under a single roof with the new striking addition.

the escalators are encased by a tube-like skin
image © john lewis marshall and jannes linders

old and new elements alongside each other
image © john lewis marshall and jannes linders

the interior features the original white coloring
image © john lewis marshall and jannes linders

image © john lewis marshall and jannes linders

image © ernst van deursen

image © john lewis marshall and jannes linders

image © john lewis marshall and jannes linders

image © john lewis marshall and jannes linders

section perspective

site plan

floor plan / level 0
1. entrance
2. tickets
3. coat rack
4. bookshop
5. information center
6. restaurant
7. exhibition old museum

floor plan / level 1
1. auditorium
2. hall
3. toilets

floor plan / level 2
1. exhibition space new museum
2. exhibition space old museum
3. toilets
4. cafe

floor plan / level -1
1. study center
2. educational center

floor plan / level -2
1. exhibition space new museum
2. hall
3. toilets







  • It kinda looks like a kitchen sink

    Jack says:
  • why do the dutch permit vandalism like this?

    Andrew says:
  • It makes me think of Mel’s Diner. The anachronism between the two buildings is grotesque and unaesthetic. Ah well, when you’re Dutch, you ain’t much

    peen says:
  • typical the netherlands, never knowing where to install thier owm idea, forgetting any integration, just me, me,me

    johan de coker says:
  • Inspiration by American Standard…they make Bath fixtures. I expected to see Hot and Cold spigots on the top.
    This thing is made even more hideous by placing it next to an actual building. Didn\’t they have a vacant lot somewhere that needed sprucing up?
    I see this as a good argument against smoking pot.

    Robert says:
  • @jack You have a real special way of looking at thinks. @mil The awnser to your question is simple: Because they can. Other institutions just think there is a big difference between relation and context so they can\’t chose for a project like this. @Andrew It\’s in their own back yard so what\’s the problem? @Peen LOL Very sharp. I bet only a few will understand how true and funny the first part of your comment is, thanks! @johan de coker It\’s typical Amsterdam. They have this slogan:\”I\’amsterdam\” (for the non-dutch: Amsterdam is IN the Netherlands and not the same as.) @Robert People who are against smoking pot will not like this building in the first place. They do not have an open mind and will take every oppertunity to say they are against smoking pot.

    So what do I think about this building as an non-smoking, vandalisme permitting and selfish dutchmen: The pictures look clean but I\’ll have to check it out for real to know how it is.

    Robin says:
  • I think this was +10 years in the making. Unbelievable, when looking at the result. In the most remote places in the world the Hadids’s, Calatrava’s, Forsters, OMA’s, Piano’s and you name them, are mushrooming in just a short time-span. Architecturally speaking Amsterdam is way, way behind what is happening elsewhere.

    Airborne says:
  • This is impressive! The exterior reminds me slightly of a cruise ship.

    Sarah P. says:
  • B C is not a random practice guys

    Ryan says:

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