The Dutch firm MVRDV has completed the building in which the art collection of Museum Boijmans Van Beuningen – over 151,000 objects – will be stored in one same place for the first time since 1935. The ‘depot’ will open to the public in the autumn of 2021.
The outcome of a competition held in 2014, the 15,000-square-meter construction rises in the north part of Rotterdam’s OMA-designed Museumpark. The curving facade comprises 6,609 square meters of glass subdivided into 1,664 mirrored panels, which, because they reflect the surroundings, help to mitigate the building’s visual impact. The compact, bowl-shaped volume has a small footprint and a generous rooftop terrace 35 meters above the ground.
Through crisscrossing stairs and display cases the central atrium offers a route up the depot, floor by floor, to give visitors a rare glimpse into how the museum takes care of and maintains its possessions, and connecting the galleries to the restoration workshops, storage spaces, and a restaurant. The museum’s collections will be kept and displayed in five microclimates, depending on the specific temperature and humidity requirements of the pieces and genres, produced with different materials.