Simões de Assis Art Gallery / Arquea Arquitetos
Text description provided by the architects. We were thrilled to receive an invitation from the esteemed Galeria Simões de Assis to undertake a project for a new space in Curitiba using an existing property. From a sustainability standpoint, renovation is the most logical route regarding resource utilization and focus on solutions. We believe that reimagining spaces will continue to be an increasingly important exercise for cities.
The ground floor boasts a high and varied ceiling height. The mezzanine region at the entrance reaches over 7m, with 4m in size for the remaining interior area. These dimensions allow for large-scale artwork and installations to display, increasing the gallery’s exhibition possibilities.
The simple and symmetrical floor plan features two large rooms with great adaptability to exhibition spaces. A central café counter and lounge area signify creating a conversational space for absorption, assimilation, and connection. The upper level is divided between administrative rooms and a large exhibition hall adjacent to the mezzanine, providing potential connections between exhibits.
The property already had a glass facade, which we maintained essentially to make the gallery highly visible from the street and connect internally exhibited works and the external context, the road, and the people. Therefore, we proposed two facade interventions: replacing the door to facilitate logistics for installation and inserting a perforated metal skin in front of the glass created from metal plates. This new skin provides sun protection for the artwork without sacrificing the transparency of the facade.
The front setback has a steep slope (the space between the sidewalk and the building). We sought a landscaping design that imparted unity and continuity to the area, initially fragmented by access points. Thus, we built a staircase that overcomes the slope and extends along the entire facade, transforming into garden beds and proposing a podium or pedestal for the constructed object. We aimed to create a project that balances valorizing the artistic treasure and bringing it closer to the public who pass by the gallery, providing a transformative moment, even if brief, of contact with art.