Science Museum


The Bloomfield Museum of Science, designed in cooperation with Architect Ari Avrahami, introduced a new kind of Museum to Jerusalem: Interactive, engaging, and focused on the visitor's learning. The building itself is a sort of didactic introduction to architecture. Entrance is through a courtyard, sheltered by a specially-designed canopy. Interior spaces, finished with neutral palette, allow free movement. The Museum's exterior is an urbane combination of traditional masonry elements and suprising contemporary elements.

The main exhibition space, spanned by a simple tetrahedral space frame, is full of light and is open to movement throughout. A neutral palette allows suspended exhibitions to assume a special prominence in the open space. The North-East elevation, which opens on to an exterior court, is transparent both to sight and to movement.

The exterior courtyard is essentially an extension of the Main Exhibition Hall. The richness and diversity of the Museum's architectural language is here most apparent: the stone-faced "administrative" wing flanks a contemporary assemblage: space frame, unique triangular air-ducts, and frameless glass curtain wall.

The Museum's continuing expansion was made possible by the original concept, which organized the main circulation of the Museum along a single axis. The site of the museum negotiates a significant grade change between two boulevards, adjacent to the office buildings of Jerusalem's government compound. The Hebrew University's Givat Ram campus is across the street, below.

Schocken Avrahami Architects chose to emphasize the the new exhibition halls by tilting them at opposing angles from the horizontal. At once a satire of local Jerusalem building restrictions as well as an attempt to explore the real limits of those local laws, the Museum addition exemplifies the local cultural paradox: Is Jerusalem a world capital or merely a provincial bureaucratic center?

© 2019 by  Schocken Architects Ltd.

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