M2FT designs a widespread museum that fits the context of helsinki and its south harbor

M2FT designs a widespread museum that fits the context of helsinki and its south harbor

the ‘hyper-museums’ are the real poles of global cities, becoming receiver and issuer cores — absolute presences which are aggressive entities, in real competition with the cities that host them and with the risk of obscuring their identity such as the controversial guggenheim helsinki project proposed in the capital city of finland. they are spectacular urban appearances — buildings with the extraordinary visual violence, and are configured today as a heterotypic reality with a typological profile that is hybrid and mutant, in which a series of functions are crossing and intersecting each other. in result, the building of the scenery for collective rites of leisure has become more productive.

how helsinki could be transformed for the maximum benefit of the city’s residents and visitors



therefore, an ‘anti-competition’ named the next helsinki, orchestrated by architect michael sorkin, was launched as an alternative to the guggenheim helsinki design competition. architects, urbanists, artists and environmentalists were called up to imagine how helsinki could be transformed for the benefit of the city’s residents and visitors. unlike the ideal project for such a global city, today’s architecture collects and raises all the signals that are sent from the neighborhood, polarizing them in an aggressive and dissonant image that oppose itself to the part of the city in which is inserted as an alien protuberance. the architecture not only claims to be art without mediation, rejecting the functional paradigm and even the tectonically one, but also tries to remount its historic disadvantage compared to plastic arts and painting.

M2FT’s experimental project for a widespread museum in helsinki and its south harbor



the contemporary museum breaks powerfully in the metropolis and invades its streets and squares emitting an overabundance of images and messages. this whirlwind, however, doesn’t celebrate the reconquest by the museum of a new centrality in the urban landscape, but rather the triumph of immediacy and media spectacle, whose laws force both art and architecture to conform with. the people of art, as well as with exceptional architecture, are seduced with the inclusion, in museum’s space, of side events, from cafes to bookshops, from cinemas to multimedia stations, that instead of act as functional areas, are equipped for the break, rest or documentation, considered spatially over-sized, or made overly extravagant.

M2FT has proposed the performance space on helsinki’s south harbor, where people can ice skate and fish



the relationship between exhibition area and services, which in the past was 9:1, in the contemporary museums becomes 1:2, showing how the art system is accompanied by an apparatus of new features, not all relevant, that make the exhibition institution more similar to the shopping mall. what the art market and museum implement is a counterfeit not only of the substance of the work, but also of the role of the museum, led to intervene like a rapacious to grab works designed and made for an elsewhere than the expected. the spectacularization of the architecture puts the museum in a higher plane than the city, going to create an element repellent to the infiltration and the influences of the place, but still hoping that this, by reflex, manages to elevate the context.

inside the performance space people can walk around the building that stands above the iced harbor



reconnecting the architecture to the urban fabric would allow both of them to help in the elevation process, without expecting an epic effort from only one of the two. the situation that would result in characterizing the place, going to insert without settling in the city and allowing an immediate use of all its functions.

M[U]S CITY’s café reunites the experimental project with helsinki’s residents and visitors



for this reason, italian based firm M2FT has designed M[U]S CITY for ‘the next helsinki’ competition with the idea of an interpretative development of a museum that contains all the points in the dictation of the guggenheim competition, which is not enclosed in a single spectacular building, but throughout the city. different solutions are thus provided with a low cost, which would amazingly increase the usability of the entire central area of helsinki, and especially the interactions between the city with its inhabitants and the idea of the museum. leveraging the decomposition of the parts of the museum, you would have the possibility to build one element at time favoring the always different economic needs of the city. moreover, the project tries to amplify the connection between city and naturalness, creating minimally invasive operations that increase sensory perception of the site.

the project tries to amplify the connection between city and naturalness

helsinki would have the possibility to build one element at time favoring the different economic needs of the city

M2FT’s M[U]S CITY is not enclosed in a single spectacular building, but throughout the city

different solutions are thus provided with a low cost, which would increase the usability of helsinki’s central area

site analysis


M2FT’s master plan for experimental project M[U]S CITY in helsinki



designboom has received this project from our ‘DIY submissions‘ feature, where we welcome our readers to submit their own work for publication. see more project submissions from our readers here.


edited by: apostolos costarangos | designboom

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