thomas phifer selected for design of warsaw's museum of modern art
thomas phifer selected for design of warsaw's museum of modern art
aug 21, 2014

thomas phifer selected for design of warsaw's museum of modern art

thomas phifer and partners selected for design of warsaw’s museum of modern art
image by by-encore
all images courtesy of museum of modern art warsaw




following a two-stage competition, the new york-based office thomas phifer and partners have been selected for the design of the museum of modern art in warsaw, beating out 11 other architects including foster + partners, henning larsen, and UNstudio. the project is a significant cultural development for poland, involving a 15,000 square meter museum as well as a 10,000 square meter building for the TR warszawa theater. the structures are to be located in the city’s defilad square, just north of the palace of culture and science.

thomas phifer and partners museum of modern art warsaw designboom

the museum is characterized by its visual transparency to the surrounding public spaces
image by by-encore




the scheme convinced the museum’s selection committee through its connectivity to the overall city and transparency to the public. this concept is clearly displayed through high glass walls, providing full visual openness between the interior and exterior as well as plentiful daylight. the museum building and theater, although largely unattached, form a vibrant central outdoor area functioning for public exhibitions, concerts, events, and foremost social interaction.

thomas phifer and partners museum of modern art warsaw designboom

a concert space in the theater faces a large glass wall facing warsaw’s defilad square
image by by-encore




to begin movement forward on the project, the museum has attained the ownership title to the land, and confirmed financing for the endeavor. these steps will allow for proceeding on design development and further investment. the institution describes: ‘on 4 july 2014, the museum and the theater became the owners of the land being the site of the future construction and, furthermore, the theater has received funding from the city budget, while the museum has been granted the necessary guarantees needed to obtain an investment loan, as it had been planned in agreement with the city authorities, as well as the ministry of culture and national heritage.’


based on current planning, the design is set for completion by mid-2016, while the complex hopes to open its doors by late 2019.

thomas phifer and partners museum of modern art warsaw designboom

the scheme envisions a complex closely connected to the overall city

    have something to add? share your thoughts in our comments section below.
    all comments are reviewed for the purposes of moderation before publishing.

    comments policy
    LOG IN
    designboom's comment policy guidelines
    generally speaking, if we publish something, it's because we're genuinely interested in the subject. we hope you'll share this interest and if you know even more about it, please share! our goal in the discussion threads is to have good conversation and we prefer constructive opinions. we and our readers have fun with entertaining ones. designboom welcomes alerts about typos, incorrect names, and the like.
    the correction is at the discretion of the post editor and may not happen immediately.

    what if you disagree with what we or another commenter has to say?
    let's hear it! but please understand that offensive, inappropriate, or just plain annoying comments may be deleted or shortened.

    - please do not make racist, sexist, anti-semitic, homophobic or otherwise offensive comments.
    - please don't personally insult the writers or your fellow commenters.
    - please avoid using offensive words, replacing a few letters with asterisks is not a valid workaround.
    - please don't include your website or e-mail address in your comments for the purpose of self-promotion.
    - please respect jury verdicts and do not discuss offensively on the competition results
    (there is only one fist prize, and designboom usually asks renown professionals to help us to promote talent.
    in addition to the awarded designs, we do feel that almost all deserve our attention, that is why we publish
    the best 100-200 entries too.)

    a link is allowed in comments as long as they add value in the form of information, images, humor, etc. (links to the front page of your personal blog or website are not okay). unwelcome links (to commercial products or services of others, offensive material etc. ) will be redacted. and, ... yes, spam gets banned. no, we do not post fake comments.


    a diverse digital database that acts as a valuable guide in gaining insight and information about a product directly from the manufacturer, and serves as a rich reference point in developing a project or scheme.

    architecture news

    keep up with our daily and weekly stories
    503,308 subscribers
    - see sample
    - see sample
    designboom magazine