Maribor Art Gallery

Maribor Art Gallery

Maribor Art Gallery

Place: Maribor, Slovenia

Year: 2010

Type: Architecture Competition

Status: SHORTLIST 12/217

Site’s Area: 15.720 m2

Building’s Area: 14.810 m2

Architects: Eirini Androutsopoulou, Dimitra Maniaki

Consultant: Ariadni Vozani




Greek Architecture Yearbook (Domes)

Exhibited at: Technopolis, Athens

The design of Maribor Art Gallery deals with the manipulation of the void. A public space is created between volumes that grow from the ground and expand through their ‘foliage’ upward.

Maribor Art Gallery

The purpose of the new Maribor Art Gallery is to create an urban hub, an attractive recreational space. The Municipality of Maribor wishes to contribute to a higher quality use of space at the Drava river and to enliven the old city centre.


The proposed scheme deals with the manipulation of the void. A public space is created between volumes that grow from the ground and expand through their ‘foliage’ upward. Α sheltered common ground is then developed, which connects the different parts of the building between them and with the external space.

The ‘city living room’ – The foyer

The ‘city living room’ (foyer) serves as a transitive place, a container of both the square’s public life and of the new Art Gallery’s display art. The new UGM is linked with the surrounding external spaces, acting as an accelerator of the urban pulse. It is binding the new buildings & spaces to the urban tissue and at the same time interconnecting the square and the historical part of the city with the river Drava.

The open outer space of the New UGM enables a visible, easily accessible and representative entrance into the gallery and provides a platform of arts in public space. The architecture of the New UGM reflects a visible and functional openness towards the city.
The proposed scheme reflects
-permeability and

The empty vessels

The building volume that houses the exhibition spaces at the west side of the site works as a vast vessel, which results in a great degree of freedom at the management of the interior. In addition, for the purpose of the interior square, the two building volumes at the east side rise from a minor trace on the ground to an increasing boundary upwards. In both cases, the building volumes are considered to be empty vessels, which are filled up in a manner that the epidermis of the building manifests its existence in a very evident way. For the same reason, the auxiliary spaces form a vertical element that doesn’t bother the eye and the body movement. The proposal takes advantage of the boundary deformations by locating sitting and study areas.

Building shell management

The surface which binds the building’s ground level and the street level is manipulated so that it turns towards the street and opens to the view to the river, while at the same time bends in plan so as to emphasize the way to the entrance of the Art Gallery. This choice could trigger social events, direct the gaze to the river and finally create an urban ground in the form of an outdoor amphitheater.

Energy efficiency

The new UGM is designed on bio-climatic principles. The foyer connects all the buildings parts and allows the physical air to pass through it so that physical ventilation is efficient and energy consumed is reduced.

Exhibition Spaces

The proposal is based on variety and adaptability. It allows for different arrangements of the exhibition space depending on current demands and/or curator’s visions (capable of simultaneously presenting different kinds of exhibitions).

The permanent exhibition is placed 11 meter higher than the foyer on a single level, although the periodical exhibition is placed on the square level and has a second space on a different height within the same volume. Because of the interconnecting volumetric forms one from the permanent exhibition can see on the double high space of the periodical exhibition. four schemes represent the different options concerning the organisation of the exhibitions on this space.

– One show scheme: this is suitable for large travelling exhibitions. The space can be used even for a single artist. A mega-sculpture or installation that can be seen from three different levels.

-Independent shows scheme: up to five different shows can be organised simultaneously on the two levels exhibition space.

-Gallery promenade: visitors’ route unified with parts of exhibition divisions.

-Large classical exhibition with smaller divisions on that space the gallery of Maribor will be able to accommodate a standard classical exhibition.

Diagram of uses
View from Drava river