Helsinki. The man made hills of Lasipalatsi square

For the new Amos Rex Museum underground extension, JKMM designs five structural dome ceilings, which surface in the public space and build its new topography.

JKMM, Amos Rex, Helsinki, 2018

In Helsinki, an institution innovates its name as well as its image and spaces. Local firm JKMM is commissioned to design a new venue for the Amos Anderson Art Museum, now shortened as Amos Rex, moving into the premises of an old modernist cinema, overlooking Lasipalatsi square and disused for a long time.
Construction works leave basically untouched the main front on Mannerheimintie street, which is restored into its original features of a modern curtain wall, and the projection room, now reopened to the public. Rather, they focus on the museum’s underground extension and the public space standing over it. Following a proven pattern, tested through countless versions in the last decades (starting from Ieoh Ming Pei’s Louvre’s pyramid), the ground is modelled and made partially transparent – the lower level clearly benefitting from the direct natural lighting. 

In the case of Amos Rex, this condition is obtained through five circular canons de lumière of different dimensions and orientations. They are structural dome ceilings, which free the exhibition space from the presence of bearing supports and at the same time define a new topography.
These recognizable, certainly eye-catching, man made hills are colonized by passers-by as walkways, seats or climbing walls. While on the one side they preclude the possibility of inhabiting Lasipalatsi square as one single space, on the other they are a smart solution to split it into several areas. Each of them has its own shape and scale, and all are entirely equipped on a technical level, which makes them the most suitable locations to be rented out for all types of events.

JKMM, Amos Rex, Helsinki, 2018
JKMM, Amos Rex, Helsinki, 2018
Amos Rex
Leading architect:
Asmo Jaaksi
Project leaders:
Freja Ståhlberg-Aalto, Katja Savolainen
Project team:
Teemu Kurkela, Samuli Miettinen, Juha Mäki-Jyllilä, Edit Bajsz, Christopher Delany, Markus Manninen, Marko Pulli, Katariina Takala, Jarno Vesa, Jussi Vepsäläinen, Päivi Meuronen, Noora Liesimaa
Föreningen Konstsamfundet, The Amos Anderson Art Museum, The City of Helsinki
13,000 sqm

Latest on Architecture

Latest on Domus

Read more
China Germany India Mexico, Central America and Caribbean Sri Lanka Korea icon-camera close icon-comments icon-down-sm icon-download icon-facebook icon-heart icon-heart icon-next-sm icon-next icon-pinterest icon-play icon-plus icon-prev-sm icon-prev Search icon-twitter icon-views icon-instagram