Fantastic artifacts from around the world at the ‘Museum on the River’ in Belgium.
The Belgian city of Antwerp is a seaport and the world has been sailing into it for five centuries. A few days ago, I visited one of its new dazzling city districts where I discovered the MAS – the “Museum aan de Stroom”.
Have you ever heard of it before? Well, I had not … but was I ever impressed when I saw this amazing new icon of Antwerp, which truly amazes and surprises the visitor. Built on the city’s once-abandoned old docks, the Museum on the River brings together several public and private collections and exhibits precious artifacts from around the world.
The concept behind the architectural design scheme of the MAS tower is to “emphasize the heaviness of the city’s history”. The sixty-two meter high sandstone and glass tower was designed by Dutch architects Neutelings Riedijk. I was fascinated by this checkered, rusty red skin tower consisting of ten gigantic natural stone trunks.
The architects covered the facades, walls, floors and ceilings of the tower with large panels of hand-cut red Indian sandstone from Agra, India. “Every storey has been rotated a quarter turn, creating a gigantic spiral staircase”, explains Interior designer Marcia Argyriades. “This spiral space, in which a facade of corrugated glass is inserted, forms a public city gallery.”
About the MAS project:
Surface area: 20.000 square meters floor surface, 11.500 square meters outdoor construction
Construction costs: € 33.409.000
Location: Hanzestedenplaats | 2000 Antwerp | Belgium
Principal: City of Antwerp in cooperation with AG Vespa
Design: International Competition | 1st Prize | April 2000
Start construction: October 2006
Realization: February 2010
Architectural design: Neutelings Riedijk Architects | Rotterdam | The Netherlands
For further information and reference, check out the following great article: