the house of hungarian music, designed by japanese architect sou fujimoto, is nearing completion in hungary as part of the liget budapest project — europe’s largest urban cultural development program. the institution will operate as the world’s first facility of complex musical initiation, bringing musical experiences to visitors through interactive exhibitions, concerts, and music education workshops. with construction progressing, the project is scheduled to open to the public at the end of 2021.
all images courtesy of liget budapest project
liget budapest is europe’s largest urban cultural development. the project involves the rehabilitation of városliget, also known as the city park. the existing site includes the museum of fine arts, the hungarian transport museum, the museum of hungarian agriculture, and the műcsarnok (kunsthalle). as part of the new masterplan, the development will also include the new national gallery, designed by SANAA, and the museum of ethnography, designed by napur architect.
the house of hungarian music features a roof structure, perforated with a variety of lightwells, which appears to float within its bucolic setting. ‘it is incredibly inspiring to work in one of the world’s first public parks, and the task of designing the building was especially exciting since we not only created an edifice but also brought the park experience into the building,’ explains sou fujimoto. ‘the liget budapest project, and within it the house of hungarian music, are a truly emblematic development project, which might serve as an example for future urban developers since it managed to create exceptional harmony between the green and the built-up environments.’
glass walls help immerse the building in nature, while the tree-like roof canopy is inspired by the visual representation of the vibration of sound: the wave. ‘there are no right angles in the roof structure, almost no two elements that are the same,’ fujimoto continues. ‘it is all unique and the surface is punctured by close to 100 individually designed holes for the trees of the park to emerge through.’ meanwhile, the glazed façade consists of 94 custom-manufactured heat-insulated panels, which are close to 12 meters (40ft) high in some parts of the building.
the project’s interior is divided between three storeys. the level below ground will house both permanent and temporary exhibitions as well as a sound dome — a hemispherical cupola in which diverse ‘sound spaces’ will be created with audio and projection technologies. meanwhile, the ground level is dedicated to the performing arts with live events held in both the concert halls and the open-air stage. finally, the uppermost storey will house an archive of hungarian pop music in addition to a series of educational rooms.
‘the house of hungarian music will be unique in that it will accommodate the triad of exhibitions, live music, and music education in one venue,’ says andrás batta, the director of the house of hungarian music and former president of the liszt academy. ‘the house of hungarian music will also take on an educational role with the development of the music education concept and events being the task of a separate team of experts. something is turned into an experience if people can make what they can see, hear, touch and feel their own, if they can store all this and recall it later. it is therefore especially important that everything that visitors encounter at our exhibitions can be stored as real experiences among their memories.’ see designboom’s ongoing coverage of the liget budapest project here.
an interview with sou fujimoto, who explains the project in more detail
philip stevens I designboom
jan 21, 2021