Sara Hildén Art Museum Tampere, Finland

Joana Polonia

The interlinking principles of energy, creativity and urban legacy inspired Alison Brooks Architect’s proposal for the new Sara Hilden Art Museum. The Tammerkoski Rapids, Finlayson historic Area and Wilhelm von Nottbeck Park together embody this very special quality of Tampere: a confluence of wild forces, fabrication and social history.

We reinterpreted the Tampere ‘Mill’ typology with a new language of mass and fluidity to create a memorable contribution to the Tampere cityscape, offering new windows to the city and a spatially invigorating gallery experience. Our proposal embeds transparent and welcoming social spaces throughout the building so that, over time, those who wouldn’t normally identify with the world of art might consider this building their home.

The museum journey is based around a great civic stair hall at the museum’s heart, which leads to galleries on either side. The grand stair, doubling as an amphitheatre, climbs upward through the building in a spiral to create a series of spatially linked ‘Art Landings’, one per floor.  Each Landing creates a central point of orientation on the visitor’s route through the upper levels of galleries. The museum journey culminates in a great double height gallery at the western apex of the building. This soaring space overlooks a new Museum Square to the south and the Finlayson Church to the west. From the city, the curved and stepping profiles of the museum’s rooftop destination spaces will offer a compelling new silhouette on the Tampere’s skyline.


Alison Brooks Architects’ Team: Alison Brooks, Ceri Edmunds, Emily Beavan, Rowan Melville, Julio Poleo, Juliana Rocha, Myfyr Jones-Evans, Jana Pakalniete, Matthew Beck

Museum Consultant
Filippo Bolognese Images