Jordan Smith

Jordan Smith

Queens, NY


Guggenheim: Vertical Museum

Conceptually designed by Enrique Norton of TEN Arquitects, the proposal is a conglomerate of six distinct parts; the tower, the sunken gallery hall, the programmed bridge, the excavation, the platform, and lastly the barranca. Taking these elements, the building becomes a combination of museum, commercial, urban, and natural space that’s interconnected as a figurative “bridge of the gap” between Guadalajara and its natural boundary; the barranca.

The overall design intention is to punctuate the horizontal elements within the city and the vertical elements of the barranca illustrated by the platform and tower respectively. The tower is ultimately a compilation of three separate gallery typologies all interconnecting to create both linear and non-linear pathways through the building.

Each typology enforces a situation where occupants are able to draw connections between the city and barranca, the overall relations between galleries, and finally the art and context in which it [the art] resides.

The classical galleries are “positive” elements of the tower which build upward in clusters. Those galleries are encompassed by the interstitial galleries that wrap around the classical spaces, and ultimately create new circulation routes. These interrelated spaces are capped at the peak and base of the tower with “big-box” galleries that punctuate the verticality of the structure. This is especially emphasized at the top in that the glass becomes entirely opaque forcing viewers to focus on the
sky and the spatial relationships of the art pieces.

All these elements come together as the tower to unify the edges of Guadalajara and the barranca.  As a study in Design Development, a partner and myself realized this conceptual design by researching and developing a structure, program, and details so that it may become a complete project.

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Status: School Project
Location: Guadalajara, MX