David Chipperfield. Museum of Modern Literature. Marbach am Neckar.

David Chipperfield,




Along with the Archive of German Literature, Schiller National Museum and a monument dedicated to dramatist Friedrich Schiller, dominates a hill in Marbach park: the Museum of Modern Literature fits perfectly into the natural and built landscape around it.

David Chipperfield. Museum of Modern Literature. Marbach am Neckar. The museum, which cost about 12 million euros, is designed not only to host its precious collections but to make visitors feel at ease.
The two blocks, at different levels, stand out with their essential lines in which the minimalist aesthetic is created by a sequence of perfectly aligned pillars surrounding the heart of the buildings. Its location is intended specifically to mark the transition between the lower part of the park and the square opening up in front of Schiller Museum. This is why the two volumes are built at two different levels, creating a terraced effect.
Visitors may enter on either level. If they start at the top, the itinerary is, of course, downward toward the exhibition and archive spaces. The lower part of the building contains most of the rooms where the manuscripts are exhibited and the catalogues are kept. These rooms, with their wooden finish, are lit up by artificial light only to protect the delicate works on display.
And yet there are naturally lit galleries along the halls offering views over the valley to the Neckar River.
In addition to wood and glass, cement is a key material in the project, in a light grey hue that helps establish its extremely simple but bold character.
The linearity of this architecture, which seems "aseptic" only on first glance, is intended precisely to serve the requirements of the exhibition and fit harmoniously into its setting.
The Museum, which has been nicknamed "LiMo", is more than just a new addition to the park dedicated to German literature, because it is intended not only to offer students greater convenience, allowing them to move around freely between the archive and museum areas and doing away with fragmentation; in addition to the functions of a container, the building serves as a "window" offering spectacular views of Marbach Park.

Laura Della Badia


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