underground art museum 'amos rex' transforms helsinki square into landscape of skylights

JKMM architects
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in finald’s capital helsinki, JKMM architects presents amos rex — an underground art museum which transforms the city’s public space into an undulating landscape.

the new contemporary architecture of the museum serves as an extension to the landmark 1930’s lasipalatsi building, refurbished as part of the project. 13,000 cubic metres of rock had been excavated from beneath the city’s lasipalatsi square to shape the museum’s main gallery space, topped with a series of domes and skylights which form the new urban landscape.

the artwork exhibited at amos rex ranges from the newest contemporary art to 20th-century modernism to ancient cultures. museum curators hope for the past, present and future to produce unique experiences and surprising encounters beneath and above ground.

asmo jaaksi, founding partner of JKMM commented: ‘integrating one of finland’s architecturally pioneering 1930s buildings – lasipalatsi – as part of the amos rex project has been a moving experience. by adding a bold new layer to lasipalatsi, we feel we are connecting past with present. we would like this to come across as a seamless extension as well as an exciting museum space very much of its time.’

amos rex has its origins in the amos anderson art museum, which has been helsinki’s leading private museum since 1965. to meet changes in the practice and display of contemporary art in the 21st century, the trustees of the amos anderson art museum concluded that a new venue would be better suited for providing new art experiences than the museum’s existing accommodation in converted newspaper offices. the nearby lasipalatsi building, one of finland’s best-preserved examples of 1930s functionalist architecture was identified as a new home for the museum.

underground art museum 'amos rex' transforms helsinki square into landscape of skylights