CLAD people

Theoni Xanth, Partner, XZA Architects

Project - New Cyprus Museum


Read on turning pages | Download PDF | sign up to CLAD

Architect Theoni Xanthi has told CLAD how her team’s vision for the national archaeology museum in Cyprus was inspired by “the materials that gave birth to Cypriot and Mediterranean culture”.

The partner at Greek studio XZA Architects is leading the design of the New Cyprus Museum – a project the firm won in a two-stage international competition held last year.

Housing the nation’s treasures, the ¤49m (US$58.7m, £43.6m) building will replace the country’s current archaeological institution in Nicosia, which was established in the late 1800s and now lacks enough space to house the museum’s growing collection of antiquities.

Three raised white-stone volumes resting above clear glass boxes will be constructed on the riverside site, currently occupied by the closed and soon-to-be relocated Nicosia General Hospital. Each structure will house permanent and temporary galleries dedicated, consecutively, to the conceptual and museological themes of ‘Topos, Cosmos and Sea’.

A terraced garden with trees and waterways will surround the building and an open-air atrium will be created around a sunken public plaza that can host outdoor performances.

According to Xanthi, “pure light, deep relieving shadows, open horizons and a strong relationship between the landscape and the built environment” will be created in the public areas to evoke the squares, atriums and promenades where the people of Cyprus traditionally gathered, socialised and built their culture.

“The design concept is to create a museum that, when visited and experienced, evokes a transition in time, in space, in memory,” she said. “The building will be much more than a stylistic exercise or an architectural statement.

“We want to create a new environment for the archaeological finds that will be exhibited here. They will emerge in light after their long stay in darkness and oblivion.

“Our feeling that the historical and cultural past is a symbolic weight – a meteoric cloud hovering above every place – has inspired us to raise the exhibition volumes from the ground in order to free the open space and let the living city pass through below.

“The intention is to create a cultural building that refers both to the past and the everyday life of the city.”

The two-year construction period will begin this year, with the first phase including galleries, administration offices, storage areas for antiquities and food, beverage and retail facilities.

A library, auditorium and underground parking will follow in the second phase.

XZA Architects have previously been shortlisted in design competitions for a Recreation Park and Rural Heritage Museum in Eptagonia, Cyprus and a Museum for the Promotion of the ancient Greek city of Argos.

Gallery
Click on an image to open the image gallery
company profile
Company profile: SPARCSTUDIO
Sparcstudio offers a bespoke and comprehensive design service with real attention to detail. Logical and inspiring space planning forms the bedrock of all Sparcstudio projects.
Try cladmag for free!
Sign up with CLAD to receive our regular ezine, instant news alerts, free digital subscriptions to CLADweek, CLADmag and CLADbook and to request a free sample of the next issue of CLADmag.
sign up
features
Conventional kitchen
"I’ve used my own life as a living lab to study the hurdles from a busy career mom’s perspective"

Veronica Schreibeis Smith couldn’t find a kitchen which worked for her plant-based diet, so she invented the wellness kitchen

The family spend time together at the Swartberg House in South Africa, resting and recharging from their hectic life in London
"It’s important for people to be rooted in place. This is a very special house, with powerful connections to nature"

Jennifier Beningfield has built her dream home in South Africa, using ancient building methods

Family space at Leaf House, the Green Village Bali. The architects found a way to preserve bamboo using Borax
"We want people to feel there’s hope and possibility and magic in the world"

John and Elora Hardy live a wildlife in the jungles of Bali. Magali Robathan finds out more about their work

Catalogue Gallery
Click on a catalogue to view it online
To advertise in our catalogue gallery: call +44(0)1462 431385
features
Floor to ceiling windows let in natural light and offer views of the vegetation. The pool provides a sense of coolness
"Even brushing your teeth in the right space can elevate a daily routine into a ritual"

With a lap pool at the heart of the home, this property is a sanctuary for Rene Gonzalez

Mia Kyricos is senior vice president and global head of wellbeing for Hyatt Hotels Corporation
"We’re now smart enough to know that it’s the environments we choose to surround ourselves with that impact our health and wellness"

Home wellness is the future, says Hyatt’s global head of wellbeing

Marc Gerritsen: “Resilient Design acknowledges we have finite resources, but also recognises we’re infinitely adaptable.”
"We’re not built for constant comfort. When we live in spaces that connect us to our surroundings, we feel better, stronger and happier – and that is the very definition of being well"

Early-onset MS inspired Adria Lake to explore resilience as both a healing modality and an approach to design in the creation of her new home and company headquarters in Colorado

Hirsch Bedner’s Delhi Summer House, one of three Vastu homes under construction
"Vastu can be dated back to at least the 6th century and is deeply rooted in the physical and spiritual fabric of Hindu society"

Chris Godfrey of global architecture practice Hirsch Bedner, on bringing a spiritual dimension to residential architecture in India

Children are raised in the outdoors, enjoying acres of woodland, trails and countryside
"Residents share stories with me of how Serenbe has changed their lives for the better and they are healthier and happier - Steve Nygren"

The original wellness community at Serenbe is expanding, with a new hamlet dedicated to health. Jane Kitchen paid a visit

cladkit product news
Artemide excites with latest lighting collection
Designer Alejandro Aravena created O to 'reconcile the needs of the natural and the urban environment'
Lauren Heath-Jones
Bjarke Ingels Group (BIG), Herzog and de Meuron, Neri & Hu, MAD Architects and Elemental, the firm of Pritzker winner ...
Zaha Hadid Design partners with Royal Thai to create carpet collection celebrating Zaha Hadid's legacy
The carpets capture Hadid's notable use of layering and interweaving as well as her use of light and shadow
Lauren Heath-Jones
Zaha Hadid Design has partnered with carpet manufacturer Royal Thai to create a new carpet collection inspired by the work ...
EAS PREVIEW: Bright Buildings to exhibit BrightOpen designs
Bright Buildings will be showcasing its range of BrightOpen buildings
At this year’s Euro Attractions Show (EAS), design and architecture firm Bright Buildings will be exhibiting its range of BrightOpen ...
cladkit product news
Carlo Ratti's 'wonder wall' robot could become reality with kickstarter campaign
Unveiled at Milan Design Week, as part of Ratti's Living Nature installation, the Scribit is the result of Ratti's ongoing investigation into and development of writing machines
Lauren Heath-Jones
Carlo Ratti Associatti has developed an intelligent robot capable of writing and drawing on vertical surfaces. Called Scribit, the device ...
Designworks launches new glow-in-the-dark tile collection
The tiles contain light-absorbing luminous pigments so they glow-in-the-dark
Lauren Heath-Jones
High-end tile supplier Designworks has created a range of illuminous mosaic tiles for commercial use. Designed to bring light into ...
Dornbracht launches 'next generation' experience shower
Rainmoon is an innovative sensory shower experience designed for use in the home
Dornbracht is taking experience showers to the next level with its multi-sensory Rainmoon concept. “Rainmoon is a culmination of bliss ...
cladkit product news
Aotta launches sound panels made from hemp husks
The panels are designed to maintain 'healthy spaces' and consist of Hemp husks fashioned into a natural porous membrane that absorbs sound
Lauren Heath-Jones
Russian design studio Aotta has developed a range of eco-friendly, sound-absorbing panels made from the waste products of hemp seeds. ...
Bartok Design installs 'transformative' soaking tubs in SpaFusion at Pallazzo Varignana
Bartok Design creates traditional Japanese soaking tubs
Lauren Heath-Jones
Bartok Design, a Japan-based supplier of Ofuro (Japanese bathtubs), has completed a major installation at the newly opened SpaFusion at ...
Tredje Natur launches Climate Tile to bring green spaces to urban settings
Tredje Natur has installed the pilot system of its Climate Tile system in the Nørrebro area of Copenhagen
Lauren Heath-Jones
Danish company Tredje Natur (Third Nature) has recently installed the pilot system of its innovative street paving system in the ...