Located at the confluence of two rivers in the french city of Lyon, architectural practice COOP HIMMELB(L)AU has finished a breathtaking project for the eponymous local museum. Musee des Confluences sheds light on themes of contrast and divergence characterized in the architecture of the design. The building integrates the fields of technology, biology and ethics and merges separate entities to form a new dynamic structure.
The museum is also conceived as an entirely public facility, functioning as both an educational and informational platform as well as an urban leisure space and has just been completed.
The design recalls three primary components: the plinth, the crystal and the cloud. The plith, situated beneath the main entrance of the museum, houses auditoriums, meeting rooms and technical areas. Above, the fully glazed crystal is oriented towards the town, welcoming visitors and serving as a public space. Large panes of glass are mounted within steel frames, drawing in vast quantities of natural light.
Cntrasting the precise contours of the crystal, the cloud has been constructed to resemble a spaceship stationed above the building. programmed across three levels, three permanent and seven temporary exhibition galleries are connected with a fluid circulation route. the configuration of the exhibition halls further establish the themes of variance and complexity, with enclosed black boxes alternating with open gallery areas.