snøhetta: lascaux caves visitor center snøhetta: lascaux caves visitor center
nov 07, 2012

snøhetta: lascaux caves visitor center


norwegian practice snøhetta has recently been awarded the bid to design the new ‘lascaux caves visitor center’ on the boundary of the vezere valley and the hillside, between a dense forest and man-formed agricultural land in motignac france. the project will display the artwork created by prehistoric artists on the walls of the natural stone vaults, and just like these artists who took cues from the existing textures and irregularities to communicate their ideas, so does the architecture exist within a small fissure following the contours of the landscape to effectively expose the subtle intricacies of the site.

subtly set into the landscape, glowing with light at dusk image © snohetta (also main image)



the long glass facade faces north towards the city of montignac to receive visitors. varying transparencies define the curtain wall facade that constantly maintains a profile with the immediate environment. the public service spaces are located towards this glass wall, receiving plenty of natural light, while the exhibitions are discovered as the visitor explores further into the earth through a similar path that the ancient inhabitants used in order to reach the same point. the project presents itself through a series of majestic spaces filled with silence, bustling trees, penetrating light in vast dark spaces, hard rock surfaces and lively vegetative components that restore the spirit of the caves and their treasured paintings.

concentrated beams of light penetrate into the exhibition spaces similar to that in caves image © snohetta

floor plan / level 0 image © snohetta



project info:


architecture: snøhetta + duncan lewis scenography / augmented reality: casson mann + jangled nerves economist: vpeas structure: kephren fluid: alto ingénierie light: 8’18’’ conception lumière acoustic: daniel commins project leader: frank kristiansen main team: knut bjorgum, rune veslegard, igor duolé, craig, riley, daniel unger location: montignac, france client: conseil général de la dordogne previsional cost: 34 000 000 € building: 15 500 000 € scenography – equipment museum: 9 900 000 € facsimile: 5 000 000 € ht outdoor: 3 600 000 € ht calendar: 2015 delivery total floor area: 8605 m2 facsimile: 1600 m2 site: 65,770 m2



  • excellent selection of firm for this very important project

    dbkii says:
  • Beautiful confluence of Site, Program, and Architect

    Chaszr says:

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