Gösta Serlachius (1876-1942) was the owner of one of the largest paper mills in Finland; he had accumulated a vast art collection during his life. In order to maintain and guard his treasures the Serlachius Foundation was created in 1933. You can only imagine what kinds of gems are currently exhibited in the museum!
The works are from many periods of the Finnish art movement starting from the prolific Golden Age to contemporary creations of today. No wonder that an extension for this museum was overdue! We at Museeum were extremely excited about it, because the extension is definitely something to SEE.
Barcelona based architecture firm MX_SI, are the proud first prize winners of the International competition (2011) for the Gösta Serlachius Contemporary Art Museum extension.On June 13th, 2014 the museum was inaugurated in Mänttä. The beautiful new museum extension also came with a specifically designed bridge, by the same architecture firm, that joins the island of Taavetinsaari with the park in which the museum is located on the shores of Lake Melasjärvi, this expanded the natural outdoor area which could also be used for exhibition space for new works of art including sculptures by Harry Kivijärvi.
The bridge was designed in a very simple manner; with minimal lines it beautifully integrates in the environment, while coexisting with works of art, it does not disrupt the soul and appearance of the museum itself. The design of the extension as a whole was created respecting its surrounding environment and identity. The interiors and exteriors of the project are in constant dialogue and harmony, allowing the building to elegantly and naturally merge with its setting.
The visual impact of the structure was kept to a minimum, respecting the delicate natural surrounding, by creating cuts and incisions within in the volume. Reflective glass was used extensively within the design of the building, the use of mirrors and wood on the exterior create a fascinating dialogue between the architecture and the nature, almost merging them together.
A path starting on the outside of the museum continues throughout its interior. The many incisions and fragments of the exterior façade cast playful shadows and fill the path with light, while providing stunning views of the scenery. The cuts and play of light create an internal rhythm and repetition mimicking the one of the museum's exterior.
The beautiful wood finishes both in its exterior and interior leave such a natural and serene atmosphere, the repetitive pattern created by its clever structure really shows the elegance that can be achieved with pure simplicity. For us at Museeum the Gösta Serlachius Contemporary Art Museum really is worth a trip to SEE for yourself.. and stay tuned, we heard there are some outrageously delicious things to TASTE as well.