Architecture 2017: 7 Anticipated Cultural Institutions Opening this Year

Rendering of the Louvre Abu Dhabi by Jean Nouvel scheduled for inaugration this year
(Louvre Abu Dhabi )

With respect to architectural landmarks, 2017 may well turn out to be an eventful year. Numerous prestigious projects are scheduled for inauguration over the upcoming months, starting with Hamburg’s new concert hall Elbphilharmonie designed by Swiss firm Herzog & de Meuron, which will be officially opened to the public later this month, or Jean Nouvel’s Louvre Abu Dhabi, slated for inauguration sometime this year, to anticipated projects such as the Zeitz Museum of Modern Art Cape Town, a museum dedicated to the work of contemporary African artists by Thomas Heatherwick and the Museum of Modern and Contemporary Art in Nusantara (MACAN) Jakarta, Indonesia’s first museum for contemporary art designed by international firm by MET Studio.
Elbphilharmonie Hamburg, Germany by Herzog & de Meuron 
Although completed in 2016, Hamburg’s new architectural landmark by Swiss firm Herzog & de Meuron has been scheduled for inauguration on January 11. The brand new concert hall was constructed on top of a historic harbor warehouse formerly used for storing tea, tobacco, and cocoa, and houses three state of the art concert halls, a spacious music education area, a hotel, a range of places to eat and drink, and a 360° public viewing platform, among other features. The Philharmonie’s characteristic glass façade, constructed from over 1000 individual window panels, and the wave-like rooftop were designed to “capture and reflect the color of the sky, the sun’s rays, the water and the city,” transforming the concert hall into a gigantic crystal.
Click here for more information on the Elbphilharmonie in Hamburg

Louvre Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates by Ateliers Jean Nouvel
The opening of the controversial Louvre outpost has been postponed several times in the past. According to the museum’s website, the official opening is now scheduled for 2017, though details remain unknown. Designed by French architect Jean Nouvel as a ‘museum city’ on the sea, the Louvre Abu Dhabi consists of a group of white buildings reminiscent of the Arab Medina and low-lying Arab settlements. Two thirds of the museum will be covered by a white dome with geometric openings inspired by palm leaves traditionally used as roofing material, which will control the light and temperature inside. The museum will display both permanent artworks and loans from Musée du Louvre and other French cultural institutions. Announced masterpieces on loan include Leonardo da Vinci’s “La Belle Ferronnière” (1495-1499) and “Statue of the King Ramessess II” (1279 - 1213 BCE) from the Louvre, Vincent van Gogh’s “Self-Portrait” (1887) from Musée d’Orsay, Jacques-Louis David’s “Napoléon Bonaparte, First Consul, Crossing the Alps at Mont Saint-Bernard, on May 20 1800” (1803) from Château de Versailles, and Henri Matisse’s “Still Life with a Magnolia” (1941) from Centre Pompidou.
Click here for more information on the Louvre Abu Dhabi.
The Botín Centre, Santander, Spain by Renzo Piano Building Workshop 

Intended as a new space for art and culture, the Foundation’s Botín Centre (the family behind the Banco Santander) is Italian architect Renzo Piano’s first large commission in Spain and expected to transform the sea-side city of Santander into a new cultural center of global interest. The two-part structure, likened by Piano himself to a spaceship that has just landed by the waterside, and realized in association with Luis Vidal + Architects, is being constructed in the Jardines de Pereda, an area previously used as a car park, providing direct access to the historic city center. Features include a two-story art gallery covering roughly 27,000 square feet, a multifunctional space seating 300, and education space, and a public square.
Click here for more information on the Botín Centre.

Zeitz Museum of Modern Art Cape Town, South Africa by Thomas Heatherwick
Zeitz Museum of Contemporary African Art (Zeitz MOCAA) is scheduled to open in a transformed, heritage listed silo building on Cape Town’s V&A Waterfront end of September 2017. Backed largely by Jochen Zeitz, the former chairman and CEO of Puma and director and chairman of the sustainable development committee for Kering, the 100,000-square-foot venue designed by British architect Thomas Heatherwick aims at becoming the “first major museum in Africa dedicated to contemporary art”, housing Zeitz’s collection of contemporary art from Africa and its Diaspora; 65,000 square feet will be reserved for exhibitions, one of nine floors will also be dedicated to education. Zeitz will also provide “a substantial acquisition budget to allow the Museum to acquire new important artworks over time to remain on the edge of contemporary cultural production.”
Click here for more information on the Zeitz Museum of Modern Art

Museum of Modern and Contemporary Art in Nusantara (MACAN) Jakarta, Indonesia by MET Studio 
The inauguration of the new Museum of Modern and Contemporary Art in Nusantara (MACAN) is one of the most anticipated highlights in Indonesia this year. Designed by international firm MET Studio, the country’s first museum dedicated to contemporary art will host over 20,000 square feet of exhibition galleries, including reinforced areas for larger commissions, as well as a 5,000 square foot indoor sculpture garden, among other elements. The museum will exhibit highlights from its founder Haryanto Adikoesoemo’s extensive contemporary collection, as well as works by local and Indonesian artists.
Click here for more information on the Museum of Modern and Contemporary Art in Nusantara.
Click here to read an ARTINFO interview with director Thomas Berghuis on the New Museum of Modern and Contemporary Art in Nusantara

Yves Saint Laurent Museum Marrakech by Studio KO
Fondation Pierre Bergé Yves Saint Laurent plans two openings this year, one in Paris and the other in Marrakech where the new Yves Saint Laurent Museum will permanently display Yves Saint Laurent’s work, staged by Christophe Martin, as well as hosting a space for temporary exhibitions, an auditorium, a research library and a café & restaurant in a 43,000 square feet complex. Designed by French firm Studio KO, the new museum will open near the Jardin Majorelle, a botanical garden founded by French painter Jacques Majorelle in the 1920s and acquired by Yves Saint Laurent and his partner Pierre Bergé in 1980 to prevent the structure from being re-developed. It is today one of Morocco’s most popular tourist attractions, and home to the Musée Berbère. Yves Saint Laurent first visited Marrakech in 1966, returning regularly in the following years. The new museum intends to honor his love for the North-African country and the inspiration he found there for his work.
Click here for more information on the Musée Yves Saint Laurent in Marrakech

Apple Campus 2, Cupertino, California by Foster + Partners 
Not really a cultural institution in the conventional sense, Apple’s Campus 2 has made it on our list because of the scale and ambition of the company’s new premises. The circular, spaceship-like campus in Cupertino California, initiated by the late Steve Jobs himself in 2006 and designed by prestigious British firm Foster + Partners, is expected to start operations in early 2017. The 176-acre site will be home to the 2.8 million square feet main building designed for up to 12,000 employees, as well as a separate corporate fitness center of ca 100,000 square feet, and a 1,000-seat corporate auditorium, among other features. Over 100 acres of the site are reserved for landscaped green space (which also includes planting 3,000 new trees). The company also takes great pride in the campus’ ecological sustainability, claiming it will be powered by 100 percent renewable energy sources, among other elements.
Click here for extensive photo documentation on the progress of the Campus 2 construction

Click on the slideshow to see an illustrated version of this article.