jean nouvel-designed museum opens in shanghai with cai guo-qiang's gunpowder paintings

jean nouvel-designed museum opens in shanghai with cai guo-qiang's gunpowder paintings

ateliers jean nouvel has completed its ‘museum of art pudong’ (MAP) in shanghai, china. occupying a prominent site in the city’s xiaolujiazui riverside district, the massive white granite-clad cultural building boasts more than 10,000 sqm of exhibition space over 13 exhibition halls. the museum‘s inaugural program presents four major exhibitions including tate, miro, and cai guo-qiang

jean nouvel museum of art pudong shanghai

MAP façade

image © chen hao

 

 

to design shanghai’s latest cultural offering, jean nouvel adopted the concept of the museum as a ‘domain’, hoping that visitors’ experience will begin from the building’s surroundings. ‘I hope that the pudong art museum is like a sculpture calmly integrated on the vast land. when people look at it, don’t think it’s an independent building, but it is a continuation of the collocation of the land, scenery and space sketches, naturally coherent together. this ambiguity is deliberately created by me. I am playing an interactive game with the huangpu river and the surrounding space,’  explains the pritzker prize winning architect. 

jean nouvel museum of art pudong shanghai

MAP façade

image © chen hao

 

 

white granite has been used on the façades and on the ground to harmonize with the surroundings. meanwhile, a 53-meter-long gallery bridge extends from the side entrance on the museum’s second floor to the platform of the lujiazui riverside walkway.

 

 

the main bund-facing elevation is largely glazed, which helps tie the new building in with the river below and the glass high-rises behind. inside, this monumental glass face hosts two special exhibition spaces articulated as two 53-meter-long glass halls. the long and narrow spaces will display installation art and multimedia works while the mirror-like surfaces reflect the scenery of the bund on the other side of huangpu river.

jean nouvel museum of art pudong shanghai

glass hall

image © chen hao

 

 

one of the main features of the design is the central exhibition hall located in the middle of the main building, which runs from the basement level to the 4th floor. the base is a 17-meter x 17-meter square with a height of 34.4 meters. a lifting platform is also set up in one corner, which can rise to the height of one floor above the ground. visitors can get different perspectives and viewing experiences of the same work of art on the same floor.

jean nouvel museum of art pudong shanghai

exhibition hall

image © chen hao

 

 

the museum of art pudong uses a combination of natural light and artificial light. for the windows, jean nouvel has framed carefully selected parts of the landscape outside, giving visitors different perspectives of the city as they move through the museum.

jean-nouvel-museum-of-pudong-shanghai-designboom-07X

image © chen hao

 

 

visitors to the newly opened museum of art pudong will be able to experience an extensive exhibition of chinese artist cai guo-qiang. titled ‘odyssey and homecoming’, the exhibition features 119 of guo-qiang’s signature gunpowder paintings as well as his first-ever VR work and a new site-specific, kinetic light installation inspired by the nature-based cosmology of the mayan civilization.

jean nouvel museum of art pudong shanghai

cai guo-qiang, day and night in toledo, 2017

gunpowder on canvas, 260 x 600 cm

image by wen-you cai, courtesy cai studio

 

 

in three large galleries on the second floor, the exhibition unfolds across two sections. ‘odyssey’ features artworks from his solo exhibitions in world-renowned museums, in which he engages with the essence of western art and civilization embodied within those institutions. the other half, ‘homecoming’, debuts new works that encompass aspects of traditional chinese art and culture as well as the cosmos as his eternal homeland. the fourth floor will showcase the artist’s early works in dialogue with his original passion for painting.

jean nouvel museum of art pudong shanghai

cai guo-qiang, study for uffizi: flora no. 3, 2018

gunpowder on canvas, 183 x 152.5 cm

image by yvonne zhao, courtesy cai studio

 

 

shanghai was the actual and tangible embodiment of western culture for the young me…’  says cai guo-qiang. ‘this exhibition addresses the wonder of my encounters with the west, the struggle over my unrequited love for my predecessor painters, and the deep breaths that I have taken in their hometowns and in the gardens of their art. riding on the kite of my hometown, steering the spacecraft of human childhood across romantic horizons, just as the cosmic tree, castillos, the extraterrestrials, and ‘encounter with the unknown.’ the odyssey is also a search for a greater hometown. I seek to encounter more artists from the past and present, from china and abroad, and through them, discover a shared ‘far-off land,’ a cosmic and eternal hometown.’

jean nouvel museum of art pudong shanghai

cai guo-qiang, black light no. 1, 2020

gunpowder on canvas, 360 x 600 cm

image by christopher burke, courtesy cai studio

 

 

‘as the MAP’s opening exhibition, ‘odyssey and homecoming’ presents how an artist can travel freely without the shackles of region, culture, or convention,’  comments li jinzhao, chairman of the shanghai lujiazui development (group) company limited. it manifests the museum’s spirit of being based in shanghai and looking at the world and its fundamental mission of connecting the eastern and western cultures.’

jean nouvel museum of art pudong shanghai

cai guo-qiang, structure, 2019

gunpowder on canvas, 240 x 300 cm

image by wen-you cai, courtesy cai studio

jean nouvel-designed museum opens in shanghai with cai guo-qiang's gunpowder paintings

cai guo-qiang, test 2017.1-1a (black gunpowder), 2017

gunpowder on canvas, 20 panels, 25.5 x 25.5 cm each

image by yvonne zhao, courtesy cai studio

jean nouvel-designed museum opens in shanghai with cai guo-qiang's gunpowder paintings

exhibition hall

image © chen hao

jean nouvel-designed museum opens in shanghai with cai guo-qiang's gunpowder paintings

shanghai panorama

image © chen hao

 

 

project info:

 

name: museum of art pudong (MAP)

location: shanghai, china

client: shanghai lujiazui development (group) company limited

architect: ateliers jean nouvel

gross floor area: 54,000 sqm (581,251 sqft)

year: 2021

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ARCHITECTURE IN CHINA (1319)

ARCHITECTURE IN SHANGHAI (152)

CAI GUO QIANG (30)

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