Ordos Museum

Updated: 2018-01-19 (dezeen.com) Print


Shaped like a large undulating blob, the Ordos Museum is clad in polished metal tiles that are resistant to frequently occurring sandstorms. [Photo/VCG]

Ordos Museum was completed in fall 2011. Familiar yet distinct, the museum appears to have either landed in the desert from another world or to always have existed. From atop a dune- like urban plaza, the building is enriched with a convergence of naturalistic interiors, bathed in light. The result is a timeless architecture in a modern city of ruins.



Whilst the surface of this shape functions as a metal container critical to protect the interior from the harsh winters and frequent sand storms of the region, metaphorically this external layer operates as a shield protecting the precious culture and history of the city from the unknown growth of the city. The museum appears to float over a waving sand hill, a gesture saluting the landscapes which have now been supplanted by the streets and buildings of the new cityscape. This plaza is now a favorite amongst the locals who gather their families and friends to explore, play or lounge in the pleasant landscape.


Galleries inside the museum are housed in smaller blobs, connected by bridges. [Photo/VCG]

Entering the museum presents visitors with a strong contrast to the exterior: an airy monumental cave flushed with natural light through skylights. The cave links to a canyon which carves out a void between the galleries and exhibition hall and is brightly illuminated at the top. Patrons maneuver along the base of these primitive surroundings and through the light across mid-air tectonic bridges, reminiscent of the intersection of the past and the future of the Gobi landscape. Visitors will repeatedly cross these sky bridges and reflect upon their journey from a variety of picturesque vantages.

The completion of the museum has provided the local citizens a place to embrace and reflect upon the fast paced development of their city. People meet organically in the naturalistic landscapes of the museum, an intersection of natural and human development.
Site Area: 27,760 sqm   Building Area: 41, 227 sqm   Building Height: 40 m