Architects: Estudio Vazquez Consuegra
Location: Cartagena, Spain
Project Architect: Guillermo Vázquez Consuegra
Technical Architects: Marcos Vázquez Consuegra and Mariano García
Collaborators: Pedro Díaz, Harald Schönegger, Pedro Caro, Fernando Burgos, Joaquín Amaya (Documentation) Miguel Chaves, Francisco Calvo, Eduardo Melero and Jeff Geisinger
Structure: NB-35, S.L./J. Jiménez Cañas, Ingeniero C.C. y P.
Services: Insur-JG, S.L.
Models: Talleres Vázquez, Juan de Dios Hernández and Jesús Rey
Project Area: 6,012 sqm
Budget: 11,458,000 €
Project Year: 2001-2008
Photographs: Duccio Malagamba & David Frutos
The building emerges to the surface as two elements: The National Centre and the large lantern skylight of the excavated volume of the Museum. Between the two, a wide ramp descends, bringing the visitor into the interior of the museum. The experience of entering is perceived as a metaphor of submersion into the ocean. The long, opaque, prismatic volume of the National Centre is located adjacent to the road which runs in front of the city walls and is aligned parallel to the edge of the quay. The other volume; broken, angular and more transparent, adopts a geometry that permits it to accommodate between the two volumes a type of plaza over the quay, the entrance to the building, a waiting room for the Museum, an open air public exhibition space from which it is possible to perceive through the lantern of the museum, some of the objects on display inside.
The name of the Museum, written in enormous letters, runs the length of a canvas of coloured concrete that constitutes the interior facade of the Centre, evoking, in their design, the condition of a volume emerging, of the submerged Museum.