The Mur Island was created in 2003 as a project of the European Capital of Culture. The island was designed by the New York artist Vito Acconci based on the concept of Robert Punkenhofer. On the shell-shaped island there is a café and an amphitheater for 350 visitors. The Mur island is connected by bridges with the two river banks. The two uses of the Mur island have also been structurally different. The café has a glazed roof while the theater is open air. Such a structure in a river is not without problems, because it is flooded at high tide. The island in the Mur was therefore provided with a ramming protection, which is to protect the metal structure from large tree trunks.
The architects Nieto Sobejano have enriched Graz with an extraordinary museum district. The Joanneumsviertel was opened in 2013. The design of the Spanish architects connects the two historic buildings underground. The square between the Styrian Provincial Library and the Universalmuseum Joanneum has differently sized, round openings through which daylight enters the attractive basement. In the largest of the five holes, there is an escalator that leads to the entrance level, from where you enter the museum or the library. The round holes on the surface become glass halos (photo), which elegantly subdivide the space.
Other buildings by Nieto Sobejano:
The most famous project for the European Capital of Culture 2003 was the "Friendly Alien" by British architect Peter Cook (Spacelab Cook-Fournier). The biomorphic form of blue acrylic glass elements is a prime example of "blob architecture". The Kunsthaus Graz differs in all respects from the baroque urban landscape of the area. From the blue blob grow 15 "Nozzles" that function as light inlets. The outer skin of the building can be illuminated by the BIX (Big Pixel) media façade and used as a monitor with images and films. The Kunsthaus Graz is a pure exhibition hall without an collection of it's own.
In the residential and office building with its curved façade there are also studio rooms for artists, which are provided free of charge. The project was realized by the architect Markus Pernthaler 2007. The Rondo has a facade made of transparent polycarbonate panels, which were installed at an angle and loosened up by irregularly arranged elements that are transparent. The Rondo was built above the Mühlgang, a canal built for the operation of mills. On one part of the roof there is a roof garden, another area is used by the solar system.
The greenhouses in the Botanical Garden of Graz date back to 1889. In 1995, the complex was extended by three greenhouses by architect Volker Giencke. The arched halls of acrylic glass elements are offset to each other and each have a deeper area and a higher area, so that the greenhouses rise from one side to the other. The three greenhouses are all interconnected.
The sports pool of Fasch & Fuchs Architcts from Vienna was opened in 2011 after the office won the 2008 competition. Like an oyster, the indoor pool opens to the outdoor pool in the interior of the property and, conversely, lets light into the interior. The Sportbad Eggenberg has a blue façade, which also differs significantly from the residential development in the Eggenberg district due to its slope. At the same time, the building shields the houses from the noise of the outdoor swimming pool. The roof is made of a steel truss structure, which has been clad on the underside with white wooden elements. White plastic sails on the ceiling of the swimming pool, serve as acoustically effective elements, which also scatter the light and are illuminated indirectly.
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