Oppenheim Architecture wins competition for Albanian restoration and museum

The First Art Newspaper on the Net    Established in 1996 Thursday, May 30, 2024


Oppenheim Architecture wins competition for Albanian restoration and museum
Besa Museum to Represent Firm’s Latest Project in Albania.



TIRANA.- Following a two-phase competition with over 40 entries, leading international firm Oppenheim Architecture has been awarded the contract for Besa Museum, Albania’s newest cultural institution. Oppenheim’s European office, based in Basel, Switzerland, has been working on a diverse set of projects in Albania, ranging from commercial and multifamily to hospitality, for over two years. Besa Museum represents one of its most prestigious yet, honoring the nation’s rich cultural heritage and welcoming spirit. With this latest institutional work, Oppenheim Architecture cements its place as the go-to firm redefining Albania’s architectural landscape.

“We are honored to represent Albania through the Besa Museum,” states Director of Oppenheim Architecture Europe Beat Huesler. “Since beginning our work in Albania a few years ago, we have been inspired by the culture and vibrancy of its people. We hope that our vision for the Besa Museum will use architecture as a tool to illustrate the Albanian people’s deep love and respect for their heritage and one another— this is what makes the country so dynamic. Our thanks to the jury and competition team for trusting us with this most important project.”

Oppenheim Architecture’s first step in the design process was to engage with local experts including Albanologists, restoration experts, historians specializing in Ottoman and Albanian architecture and culture, and a museologist. The firm collaborated with revered institutional specialty firm Ralph Applebaum Associates to ensure that they were able to properly meet the unique requirements of a museum such as this. From there, the team imagined how an abstract concept such as Besa could be transformed into a concrete work of architecture.

Besa Museum takes its name from the Albanian concept of “Besa,” a sacred principle that represents the given word, or one’s honor to host and protect any guest and welcome them as one of your own, and demonstrates the core of the Albanian way. Through research, the firm interpreted four pillars — tradition, protection, hospitality, and honor— that are deeply ingrained in the Albanian identity and reflect an intense cultural prestige. Oppenheim Architecture’s concept for the museum seeks to capture this feeling, using architecture as a vehicle to explore examples of the country’s own moments of Besa.

The Ministry of Culture of Albania chose the site of the museum, located in the Toptani Residence in Albania’s lively capital city, Tirana, which showcased it as a historical monument that is meant to be preserved and respected. The Toptani Residence itself is a critical part of Albanian history, named for one of the country’s most historic families. Adds Huesler, “We want to leverage the power of the existing house, having it as a site of exhibits and an exhibit itself.” The spaces serve as testimonies to the Albanian way of life, with the Oppenheim team proposing a restoration of the rooms and art in order to highlight historical and current events during which Besa has guided Albania; notably, welcoming of Jews during the Holocaust, as well as Kosovar and Afghan refugees in contemporary times. The museum experience itself is divided into two parts, one above ground located inside the existing residence, taking the guests through a journey of understanding Besa historically and culturally. The second is underground where visitors are immersed in the experience of Besa for a fully interactive experience of the concept.

The most notable addition to the property will be the bright red modern monoliths located in the courtyard that is meant to draw visitors in from the surrounding city. The towers will connect to a new wing built under the exterior courtyard and will in essence be beacons of light that reflect down into the below-ground wing and use the effects of natural light and shadow to further accent the impressive exhibits. Connected through the Toptani Residence through an underground passage, the wing mirrors the organization of the original Ottoman structure with rooms organized around a central space called an Oda. The above ground sculptural elements will also announce the presence of the museum to the greater city of Tirana, adding a minimal yet impactful new feature to the city’s historic skyline.










Today's News

July 31, 2023

A vanishing masterpiece in the Georgia marshes

An exceptional loan from the Frick Collection, New York, to the Chateau de Chantilly

"Tim Silver: Among the Leaves" including sculpture, photography and installation on view at Sullivan+Strumpf Sydney

Alix Vernet's 'Street Casts' debuts a new video installation, photography, and large-scale ceramic casts

Sargent's Daughters presenting the exhibition 'Laurence Pilon: Benthic Ravers' in New York

Solo exhibition by Freddie Mercado revolves around a maximalist performance of gender fluidity and translocal belonging

Sadaf Jafari, LEED AP BD + C, CPHC, has joined SGA's Boston office as the Direcor of Sustainable Design

Winner of the competition solo exhibition at All About Photo is Lisa McCord with 'Rotan Switch'

Five years of Christopher Myers inter-disciplinary work now on view at Blaffer Art Museum

Stephen Friedman Gallery has announced their representation of Yooyun Yang

Baber, Staprans, and Nakashima highlight Moran's August Art + Design sale

Swann Galleries to feature Vintage Posters auction featuring a collection of Italian Liberty Style Posters

The life and death of a 'punk rock Warhol'

A climate warning from the cradle of civilization

Association for Public Art in Philadelphia appoints Charlotte Cohen as its new Executive Director

New 360-degree virtual tour of groundbreaking special exhibit now available

CLAMP announces the death of Amos Badertscher

Bruneau & Co. to hold Summer Pop Culture auction

Congolese artist makes debut in the South Main Arts District

Oppenheim Architecture wins competition for Albanian restoration and museum

SunRay Kelley, master builder of the counterculture, dies at 71

A trombonist on a mission to break barriers in classical music

Class is in session. The teacher? Mark Morris.

Bundanon's new exhibition season starts off with 'The Polyphonic Sea' which includes 12 multidisciplinary artists

What makes a youtube video truly amazing, from a viewer perspective?

How AI Is Revolutionizing Art and Music

Learn About the Features of Best Chatting Applications




Museums, Exhibits, Artists, Milestones, Digital Art, Architecture, Photography,
Photographers, Special Photos, Special Reports, Featured Stories, Auctions, Art Fairs,
Anecdotes, Art Quiz, Education, Mythology, 3D Images, Last Week, .

 



Founder:
Ignacio Villarreal
(1941 - 2019)
Editor & Publisher: Jose Villarreal
Art Director: Juan José Sepúlveda Ramírez
Writer: Ofelia Zurbia Betancourt

Royalville Communications, Inc
produces:

ignaciovillarreal.org juncodelavega.com facundocabral-elfinal.org
Founder's Site. Hommage
to a Mexican poet.
Hommage
       

The First Art Newspaper on the Net. The Best Versions Of Ave Maria Song Junco de la Vega Site Ignacio Villarreal Site
Tell a Friend
Dear User, please complete the form below in order to recommend the Artdaily newsletter to someone you know.
Please complete all fields marked *.
Sending Mail
Sending Successful