UGM Gallery

Project info


Competition | Competition Entry


Drava river area, Maribor | Slovenia


Municipality of Maribor | Maribor


15 118 m2 gross


32.000.000 $


Schematic Design




Ilja Mikitišin

The Gallery attempts to provide an answer to dilemma of a non-existent theoretical consensus on the function of contemporary Gallery, namely - is the Gallery a place for safekeeping eternal values or is it a laboratory of change? The response to this question is certainly in achieving a balance between the competing functions, in all the cultural, architectural and specific local experience. The competition purpose of the New UGM building is to create an urban hub, an attractive space to spend free time for everyone. In this case, the New Maribor Art Gallery will be a comprehensive cultural and urbanistic conglomerate rather than a mere depository of artefacts. The New Art Gallery has aspiration to become leader in urban renewal, educator for knowledge-based society, community forums, cultural attraction for tourists, place for families to spend their free time, and idea factory for the creative industry.

Location, the subject of the competition, is understood as connecting space between the city and Drava river embankment. The concept is based on making this connection in form of public space integrated with Gallery complex. Simplest settling of the height difference between the direction from city and embankment created the open space visually connected, a space of various activities, suitable for wide audience, with emphasis on content for all generations. The form of the building like a spatial essence of new complex is adjusted to the terrain and a future building function. On the other hand, certain contents (catering area, library, architectural center, creative industry center, children museum) are opened either towards the river and interconnected between themselves. The quality of the space is achieved through volumetric juxtaposition of levels intertwining the different contents with specific main Gallery entrance that relates to the terrain and location.

The main Gallery entrance is from the visitors’ Gallery promenade on west side of location (near to Ribiška street) on the context level 265.20m. Besides these, the Library, Catering area, Creative industry center, Gallery management and Architectural center have their separate entrances from the street E (level 258.20). The visitors from the all entrances are gathered in the main Gallery entrance hall and directed towards to the periodic and permanent exhibition spaces. Exhibition movement is cyclical, the Gallery visitors start from the periodic exhibition spaces and end up at higher level in permanent exhibition area. Movement through periodic exhibition area is performed through two levels, which is made possible by using 6% ramp, alternatively by lifts and stairways. Movement of the Gallery employees is vertical using lifts and stairways. The whole complex is interconnected, taking into the regard that the walking distances should be shortest possible. These complex connections function twofold: for the staff and for the visitors, in the way that leaves no confusion as to which walkways are for visitors and which for the employees. Entrances hall is directly linked to periodic exhibition area, gallery shops, cloakroom and lecture room and through panoramic elevators and stairways to the other complex areas.

The building consists of two structural elements: reinforced concrete walls and floors - which are supported by steel girder grid due to the span of 16m and shell made of steel trusses. The steel structure is composed of box girders adapted to their particular stress tapering. Horizontal forces resulting from wind are carried into the massive structure and absorbed by the steel structures frame effect. The exhibition spaces are conditioned by all-air VAV-system (no water systems in the exhibition spaces). People are a major contributor to the room cooling load also determine the amount of fresh air to be provided. Supply air ducted from the central air handling plant in the cellar via vertical shafts to the suspended ceiling space in the exhibition rooms and delivered via slots diffusers into the spaces. An integrated security system is provided including CCTV (close circuit television) surveillance of public areas, full function access control at selected entrances end lifts and central monitoring equipment near to entrance reception desk. A complete Building Management (BMS) is provided consisting of multiple Direct Digital Control (DDC) data processing outstations and a central management system. The lighting in the exhibitions areas is controlled. Areas are partly illuminated by day-light via lanterns. This light is diffuse and has ambiently character and supported by artificial light with the same direction. The main Gallery entrance generally illuminated by day-light through main lantern into the middle of the building and also the part of permanent exhibition areas.

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