Celtic Museum by Kada Wittfeld Architektur

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Celtic Museum by Kada Wittfeld Architektur

Gerrman architects Kada Wittfeld Architektur have completed this metal-bodied museum in Glauburg, Germany, that cantilevers out towards a historic Celtic burial mound.

Celtic Museum by Kada Wittfeld Architektur

A large panoramic window to the end of this cantilever creates a viewpoint for visitors, facing the archeological site.

Celtic Museum by Kada Wittfeld Architektur

Visitors can also access the roof, where an additional viewing platform is located.

Celtic Museum by Kada Wittfeld Architektur

Internally a broad flight of steps leads from the entrance to the exhibition rooms.

Celtic Museum by Kada Wittfeld Architektur

Photography is by Werner Huthmacher.

Celtic Museum by Kada Wittfeld Architektur

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The following is from the architects:


Brief- A museum for Celtic art, in direct proximity to a historic burial mound.

Celtic Museum by Kada Wittfeld Architektur

Similar to an excavated archaeological find, the metal body of the museum juts out from the landscape and forms a counterpart to the burial mound. More of a mysterious object itself rather than architecture, the museum should be stumbled upon by its visitors as a marker of landscape discovery.

Celtic Museum by Kada Wittfeld Architektur

Celtic Museum Glauburg | Germany

Because of its strategic position and sweeping view, the plateau at the edge of Wetterau was a favourite settlement area from the 5th millennium BC until the High Middle Ages.

Celtic Museum by Kada Wittfeld Architektur

The remains of the settlements can still be seen in the park and make the Glauberg – with the help of the myths and legends about the inhabitants of the Glauberg – a very special place, not only for researchers.

Celtic Museum by Kada Wittfeld Architektur

In the 1930s, excavations were already being conducted, but had to be suspended with the turmoil of the war. But what the archaeologists discovered from the geomagnetic aerial photos and brought to light between 1994 and 2000 was beyond their wildest dreams.

Celtic Museum by Kada Wittfeld Architektur

The sensational discovery of the Celtic princely tombs with substantial, fully preserved burial objects, the cult area and its settlement makes it one of the most important Celtic archaeological and research sites in Europe today.

Celtic Museum by Kada Wittfeld Architektur

The cult surrounding the ca. 20 ha large archaeological area with the reconstructed burial mound and sections of the processional routes is immediately noticeable. The gentle topography stretches impressively up to the horizon.

Celtic Museum by Kada Wittfeld Architektur

Out of respect for the distinctive location, the architecture avoids great gestures and withdraws in favour of the historically formed landscape. The Celtic museum merges into the spacious landscape as a clearly contoured and distinct structure.

Celtic Museum by Kada Wittfeld Architektur

Half concealed in the slope, it is oriented to the Celtic mound, thus consciously allowing it to be the principal player, whose central function as a landscape element is supported by the museum as a “perception intensifier”.

Celtic Museum by Kada Wittfeld Architektur

The protected space under the mighty overhang serves as the start and end point of the tour on the archaeological trail and for the exploration of the museum.

Celtic Museum by Kada Wittfeld Architektur

A broad flight of steps in the building welcomes visitors and guides them gradually to the exhibition.

Celtic Museum by Kada Wittfeld Architektur

The closed volume provides an exhibition situation that does justice to the light-sensitive exhibits and allows visitors to completely immerse themselves in the Celtic world.

Celtic Museum by Kada Wittfeld Architektur

One of the highlights of the exhibition is the large panorama window, which offers an impressive view of the burial mound, thus incorporating it into the exhibition itself. The roof as a viewing platform offers a panoramic view of the landscape and reveals the sky.

Celtic Museum by Kada Wittfeld Architektur

The Celtic Museum is a clearly contoured and distinct volume, blending in with the surrounding landscape. Partly inserted into the slope, it projects itself towards the burial mound. Its vital function as an element of the landscape, the museum building amplifies the burial mound’s leading role.

Celtic Museum by Kada Wittfeld Architektur

Underneath the main volume, one finds the foyer and the café and adjoining rooms as well. Here begins and ends the exploration of the museum’s archaeological trail. A staircase-ramp guides the visitor into the exhibition.

Celtic Museum by Kada Wittfeld Architektur

In the end, one finds a panoramic window, offering an impressive view of the burial mound, incorporating it into the exhibition itself. The roof acts also as an observation deck onto the scenic landscape and the skies above – so that the surroundings can be “discovered.”

Celtic Museum by Kada Wittfeld Architektur

Project Details
Typology: museum
Construction volume: gfa 2.190 m² cubature 9.500 m³
Architect: kadawittfeldarchitektur
Client: Federal State of Hessen represented by HMWK and HBM
Realization: 2008-2011
Competition: 1st prize 2006
Project manager: Oliver Venghaus (architecture), Ben Beckers (exhibition design)
Exhibition Graphics and Interactive Media: Studio Kaiser Matthies
Exhibition Graphics Design: Katharina Matthies (Project Manager), Julia Schnegg
Interactive Media: Charlotte Kaiser
Awards: Auszeichnung vorbildlicher Bauten in Hessen 2011

  • zecks

    I really like the external concept and detail, but I'm not so sure about all that grey inside

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Zafar-Tashmukhamedov/100000846182818 Zafar Tashmukhamedov

    Too simple and also beautiful (amazing landscape for this building)

  • Ta Ra

    simple and beautiful!!!

  • Dan

    a bit unfair to the architects to mention it in this context, but there has been a small scandal in Germany about the museum people accidentally hiring a Nazi – security company. http://www.bild.de/regional/frankfurt/neofaschism
    It got the building into a few mainstream papers, rather than just being published in magazines only read by architects. So I guess any publicity is good publicity in this case as it will get even more people to want to go and see the building now!

  • mmmhhh

    corten steel + overhang, the same trick since 1990

  • nicey

    balancing barn, balancing gallery, steven holls groundscraper, is this architectural planking? http://www.guardian.co.uk/sport/gallery/2011/may/

  • Mohamad

    the interior is simply astonishing, black is a great color