A Light Well for Salzburg
Video © ORF
© Patrick Gläßner
© Schenker Salvi Weber
© Schenker Salvi Weber
© Schenker Salvi Weber
© Patrick Gläßner
© Schenker Salvi Weber
© Schenker Salvi Weber
© Schenker Salvi Weber
© Schenker Salvi Weber
© Patrick Gläßner
© Patrick Gläßner

Museum Belvedere Salzburg

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Residenzplatz 9, 5020 Salzburg, Austria
Salzburg Museum GmbH

General Planner Competition 2021 — 1st Prize
“A Light Well for Salzburg”

The iconographic light well in the inner courtyard of the ‘Neue Residenz’ is the guiding principle of this scheme, drawing analogies to the historic ‘Giardino Segreto’ and the traditional ‘Salzburger Durchhäusern’. Thus, a spectacular as well as contemplative public space is generated in the heart of the historic centre of Salzburg. The light well is a centrifugal joint between the above, below, interior and exterior, Heaven and Earth. The element of water in all its aggregates cools in summer and composes the acoustic backdrop.

The staircase, connecting the exhibition rooms of the Belvedere Museum vertically, is integrated into the historic fabric of the 17th century ‘Neue Residenz’. The historic atrium is retained and the vaulted ceiling carefully exposed, preserving its heritage. Visitors enter the two courtyards of the ‘Neue Residenz’ from three sides through the grand early-Baroque portals either from ‘Residenzplatz’ or ‘Mozartplatz’ or from ‘Kaigasse.’

As the defining feature of the inner courtyard, the light well evolves into an overscaled skylight conically staggered towards the exhibition level, creating a concise architectural urban space. On the exhibition level the art should take centre stage, concrete and the luminous ceiling form the functional backdrop. Trees with tall slender trunks spread a green canopy over the courtyard, creating a subtle interplay between light and shadow, reminiscent of the treatment of light in historical landscape paintings.

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