Art Museum Strongoli by Coop Himmelb(l)au



Austrian architects Coop Himmelb(l)au have been commissioned to design the new Art Museum Strongoli in Calabria, Italy.


The museum is to be built on top of the Motta Grande overlooking the city.


Here's some text from the architects:

The new Art Museum Strongoli in Calabria is the third COOP HIMMELB(L)AU project in Italy. The museum is not only a cultural center but also understood as a generator for a future development of Calabria, a place for cultural entertainment and recreation.


The Art Museum is situated on the top of the "Motta Grande" hill in front of the city, visible from far away. The new museum houses not only flexible exhibition spaces, but also a small "multi-hall" and a panorama restaurant.


The project is a composition of three main elements: the emblematic, cone-shaped construction with the entrance is orientated towards the city, while the cantilevering restaurant at the opposite end of the building offers a panoramic terrace facing the sea in the east. Both public attractors are linked by a two-storey exhibition volume.

The exhibition areas are determined to be as flexible as possible, supported by underground service facilities accessed via two elevators. The multi-hall can be used as temporary exhibition space, lecture hall, auditorium and cinema or simply as an extension space of the foyer for public events.

More Dezeen stories about
Coop Himmelb(l)au:



China Insurance Group Headquarters, Shenzhen


High School #9, Los Angeles


Zarautz Scenic Arts center, Spain


Museum of Contemporary Art & Planning Exhibition, Shenzhen


Akron Art Museum, USA

Posted on Friday March 27th 2009 at 11:01 am by Megan Wilton. Copyright policy | Comments policy

  • Ste

    well i think you can look at this proposal on different angles… its easy to bash this building cause of the expressive forms and the formal similiarities to late hadid/ghery stuff… imho here we got some more matureness inside and the result is a well sophisticated project! as for the landscape – building dialogue this works so well! cant imagine how this should be “design without respect”? what is more respectfull then foldings and smooth forms in this context with hills and vegetation? a box? please dont make me laugh… now they need to show us how the interior spaces will work and how they will profit from this form then i am very happy and start feeling more hopefull for expressive post-deconstructivism-designs… i like it! looks like coop found back the their old strenghts with a nice tad of provocation and challange inside their projects!

  • tm

    just to give a hint for those who think it does not respond to the landscape: think of the PLATEAU >> WIND and a form that is created by this natural force.
    it is a strong claim, true.

  • Brian

    One word:
    Public School 9
    Los Angeles California

  • Frank

    simply awful…how many of these so called designs are going to be built nowadays? seems pretty derivative to me…maybe the interiors will meet out, but the problem with these sculptural designs, is that they are designed “outside – in”, meaning the programme is crammed into the interior to fit the form; experientially, its no longer about the art it houses…

    self-referential and simply a regurgitation of the ‘blobitecture’ of the mid nineties…I hope it joins a similar fate of that ‘movement’

  • deligency

    got used to it…

  • Stunning and I love it. the contrast of nature and futurism is perfect. Itlaians are known for good desing, and this is a perfect scenerio where contrasts works beautifully.

  • Armann

    This guy, and others, were the avant-garde… 25 years ago. The only thing that actually evolved in most of their practices during this time is the instruments used by their poorly paid interns…
    Now, this kind of maximalist design comes as pretentious as it is sterile. There just isn’t any more juice left in there, it starts to get ridiculous. The reason why it gets more difficult to distinguish one design from the other is that it has actually become mainstream, in its most inconsequential form.
    I’m sure that, fifty years from now, everybody will look at these things in history books and laugh.

  • jarjarWaters

    just because you can…does not mean you should….
    frankly I’m bored with all these frustrated sculptors.

  • MAX


    my dear

    …Italian geography!
    Before to put a comment people should be aware what they say!!!
    … Strongoli >Calabria (Crotone)
    …Stromboli>Sicilia (Lipari).
    by the way
    Im glad that projects and infrastructures are quite slow to be build in Italy especially in the south!
    I don’t think we deserve this bird _ _ i _!

    WAKE UP!

  • JDC

    I love modern, post-modern, aggressive, progressive architecture, but it still has to play by the rules, otherwise any monkey could design a structure. Total disregard for the site is not architecture, no matter how convincing the architects comments/reasons might be…even if they spin it to sound like this wonderful sculpture actually fits in the landscape. This is a great peice of sculpture, but architecture is more than sculpture. I hope for the sake of the area this never gets built.

  • nescobar

    Boppie how can you write crap like this I’m not terribly fond of Coop Himmelb(l)au, they appear to do stuff without reason ?????

    Perhaps you should read the texts of Wolf D. Prix a bit more thorough than the skimming you obviously have done. There is a confound wish, desire and goal in the work of the Coop.

    Get to it!

  • Pete

    Looks like a Heaven Building (Himmelbau) in the blue sky (Himmelblau).

    Respect the site? Who of us will actually go there? Most of us will only see pictures. Who wants to see pictures of a boring site specific project? I want to see pretty pictures.

    It doesn’t even touch the site. It’s like a cloud. Clouds don’t need to be site specific.

  • tanyatelford

    call me romantic if you want, but i just thought to my self "can you imagine, how amazing it would be to view the museum structure from the top of a hill as in picture 2 and then approach it, through the hills and see an art collection". amazing,

    but then I thought: why fund this when other places are having to fight to remain open and functioning:

  • coop himmelblau is sort of turning into the "frank gehry wannabe style" more and more a little late in the game…

  • tomas

    it looks like an accident in sketchup

  • jada

    It look like a giant whistle““

  • marwa altamimi

    The positive thing about it is that they took the place of service facilities into consideration while having this shape and having these multifunctional spaces in a museum. Nevertheless, having this modern shape on this site is not proper.