Turkish museum among best museum buildings in last 100 years
The Odunpazarı Modern Museum (OMM), designed by famous Japanese architectural firm Kengo Kuma, was selected in a prominent list which features some of the most significant museum buildings of the past 100 years.
“What makes a great museum? It’s about more than just the art inside its walls—it’s also those walls themselves, which are meant to work in service of what’s on view,” the magazine said in its Jan. 24 article.
“As many architects have realized over the years, museum buildings can, if anything, function like artworks themselves, as objects for appreciation. In some cases, these buildings have become just as identifiable as the masterpieces in museums’ collections,” it said.
“Borrowing from local traditional wooden Ottoman houses—Odunpazari means ‘wood market,’ and is also the name of the region where the institution is sited—the design by Kengo Kuma & Associates looks akin to an elegant log cabin, with interlocking boxy structures composed of stacked laminated blonde timber beams that feature Lincoln Log–like slits,” it added.
The list also includes influential modernist experiments and polarizing postmodern expansions, architectural oddities and beloved additions, circular museums and glassed-in pyramids.
Centre Pompidou in the French capital, Niteroi Contemporary Art Museum in Brazil’s Rio de Janeiro and the National Museum of African-American History and Culture in Washington D.C. stand out as the three museums at the top of the list.
Spain’s Guggenheim Bilbao and Italy’s MAXXI also were named in the article.
Synthesis of Ottoman, Japanese architecture
Founded by collector Erol Tabanca and inaugurated by President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan in 2019, the museum building was inspired by the iconic Ottoman-era houses in the settlement as well as traditional Japanese architecture.
The journal noted that the museum hosts Tabanca’s collection of Turkish modern art as well as temporary exhibitions.
The museum has a contemporary art area of 4,500 square meters bringing vitality to the historical Odunpazarı quarter with its striking wooden structure system and impressive architecture.
The museum has been awarded the 2019 Special Award by the Culture and Tourism Ministry, presented since 1979 as an expression of gratitude to those who have contributed to the cultural heritage and the art world of Turkey with their original works, applications, interpretations or scientific research.