The leadership of the Polytechnic Museum on the museum’s architectural contest and its future

12.07.2011, 13:32

Director of the Polytechnic Museum and Deputy Director of the Polytechnic Museum’s Fund talk about the museum’s future as well as the first step of the contest for its reconstruction. Strelka Institute for Media, Architecture and Design acts as the contest consultant.

Natalya Sergievskaya, Deputy Director of the Polytechnic Museum Fund:
«Since the museum opens only after reconstruction in about six years, we can’t focus on architectural or design solutions of museums that have already been built. We have to build a museum that will go a bit more forward. The Polytechnic Museum has to transform from a visually closed building, in which a lot of space is reserved for service, storage and offices, to a surface that is attractive to its visitors. In accordance with the new Concept of the museum, a larger surface needs to be accessible to visitors. The public spaces that are already there, for instance educational spaces and auditoriums, need to be reconstructed according to today’s highest standards. The majority of our public spaces should become easy to transform, they should be flexible. They must be adapted in such a way that new equipment can be used.

Boris Saltikov, Director of the Polytechnic Museum:
«I expect the winner of the contest to embody the ideas as they are found in the concept that Event Communications prepared in cooperation with our museum. We pondered quite long on how to put new spaces with 21st century visions into a 140-year old building. I want our museum to resemble the museums of Europe and America, like London’s Science Museum and Germany’s Deutsche Museum, where modern museums and technologies, at least when we talk about London, are one with an old building. I hope the jury chooses the company that is able to both take risks and do something new. The museum opens between 2018 and 2020, and the interior needs to reflect the taste of public and specialists at that time. At the same time, the unique 19th century building should be saved, significant as it is for Moscow. Architects will need to expand the building’s public spaces for recreation, entertainment, for a bar and shops, so that the public doesn’t just go from exposition to exposition with a bored face, but also visits the museum to meet friends. On top of that, it’s necessary to bring back the building’s gallery construction. The galleries were taken out of sight by various rooms during the years of Soviet rule; now they are occupied by the museum administration. That is to say, we want to give the museum to the public.»