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Touch the feelings. Museum of Emotions project

09 of March '23

{tag:studenci} a student of architecture from the Silesian University of Technology in response to the unusual challenge of the second edition of the international competition "Museum of Emotions" of the Buildner designed a platform-like building on the water. Her work, „Touch the feelings”, prompting viewers to get in touch with various feelings, was shortlisted for the competition.

As part of a series of annual architectural competitions called „Museum of emotions” organized by the Buildner platform, participants were asked to use architecture as a tool to evoke emotions, by adjusting scale, colors, light and materials. The goal was to design a museum consisting of two rooms representing opposing emotions— positive and negative. Participants were free to choose the location of the design, the construction or the selection of individual feelings. An additional challenge was to present the design concept solely through images, without using text.

The works submitted for the competition were evaluated by a jury consisting of: Martin Beverfjord (Rever & Drage, Oslo), Tommaso Calistri (Killa Design, Dubai), Nina Freedman (Dreamland Creative Projects), James Krueger (HMC Architects, San Diego), Kerim Miskavi (Miskavi Architecture Studio, Istanbul), Françoise N "Thépé (FRANÇOISE N "THÉPÉ ARCHITECTURE & DESIGN, Paris), Nuno Pimenta (Porto), Angelo Renna, Sean Shen (ZJJZ Atelier, Shanghai). Three main prizes were awarded(First Prize + Buildner Student Award went to a team from Egypt consisting of: Hassan Mohamed, Fayrouz Khalid, Youssef Mohamed, Marium Hesham), six honorable mentions, and the competition shortlist was published. On it were two Poles: Natalia Suchy from the Silesian University of Technology with her project „Touch the feelings” and Michalina Grzyb from the Magdalena Abakanowicz University of Arts in Poznań (you will read about her work soon in the next article).

Projekt Muzeum Emocji, rzut

The museum resembles a long bridge located in a marshland setting

© Natalia Suchy

touch your feelings

Although the competition challenge was to present only visuals, we asked Natalia Suchy to describe her concept.

The idea of the„Touch the feelings” project is to create a space integrated with the environment, directly affecting the feelings of the viewer. The building was designed using natural materials in a wooden structure, the author says.

The museum proposed by the young architect took the form of a 110-meter-long and 10-meter-wide platform, located in a marshland setting. Its tract was divided by the author in half, thus designating two separate halls. The axis of the establishment is a wall, located on an east-west line, guiding visitors through the space. The texture on its surface changes, depending on the intensity of emotions. The museum consists of a reception area and eight covered blocks, divided into four for each room. Access to them is intuitive— there are passageways in the main wall so as to allow walking between the blocks.

Wnętrze strefy pozytywnych emocji

interior of the positive emotions zone

© Natalia Suchy

positive emotions

In the Positive Emotions space, I placed emphasis on playing with bright, southern light in order to createa pleasant feeling of closeness and unity with nature. The delicate wooden materials on the wall are light in color, making the blocks appear more spacious, Natalia explains.

The spaces have been separated by curtains, which, moved by gusts of wind, bring dynamism to the museum's interior. The canopy in this part of the building is also lightweight, in order to maintain adequate air circulation.

Initially, the space invites the viewer, slowly revealing successive blocks, gradually stimulating his curiosity. The next zones show emotions of joy and euphoria, aiming eventually at tranquility, for which the last segment overlooking the surrounding landscape has been designated, the author adds.

Wnętrze strefy negatywnych emocji

The interior of the negative emotions zone

© Natalia Suchy

negative emotions

The difficult part of the museum, concerning the negative emotions zone, is located on the north side of the building and presents a spectrum of sadness, fear and anger up to the feeling of emptiness. Due to less light and the use of wood in dark tones, the space gives an unsettling impression. The initially inviting environment narrows, which the designer says is meant to create a feeling of overwhelm and uncertainty. To reinforce this impression, the blocks were enclosed on all sides to prevent sunlight from entering.

Users can only hear the sound of water, but while inside the museum, they are unable to see it. Such an opportunity arises in the last part of the negative emotion zone, where visitors look at the surrounding landscape through a translucent wall. Left with a feeling of emptiness, they have a chance to reflect on the changes taking place in our climate," the student explains.

Muzeum Emocji w otoczeniu mokradeł

The museum, thanks to a ramp, connects to a sheet of water

© Natalia Suchy


The museum balances over the water, aiming to escalate emotions, to finally mute them, connecting with the surface of the water, thanks to the ramp. At this point, the platform ceases to have a uniform plane and turns into separate fragments flooded and waterlogged.

Our emotions, their variability over time and the individual's individuality were important determinants during the design process, so the facility does not impose a specific path of movement. It is up to the visitors to decide which path they will take— depending on their feelings at any given moment. Directing their steps to the last segment and looking at the surrounding space, they will experience completely different emotions, despite viewing the same landscape," Natalia Suchy concludes.

Also read about the work of Maja Klawitter from Wroclaw University of Technology entitled Museum of Emotions. The influence of architecture on the control of a person's emotional state, which was made as part of the first edition of the „Museum of emotions” competition.

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