Magda Narkiewicz

Architectural Design Crossovers

MSc 1 studio: 'City of Flows/City in Flow' Hamburg | Fall semester 2019

Hamburg Musical Studies Institute

The Hamburg Musical Studies Institute serves as a space for capturing and archiving the spirit of the city and its inhabitants through a pure creative expression of music. It enables sharing and understanding of music, but not in a didactic manner. In turn, the Institute provides an anti-dogmatic environment without separation between levels of professionalism or music genres. The design encourages participation of users, especially needed in the age of declining attendances and digitalisation. With its open public program, it offers an opportunity for musicians to create, practice, and collaborate with far reaching artistic, social, and economic benefits.

Set at the border of HafenCity in Hamburg, the proposed Institute occupies an existing gap in the urban fabric created by infrastructure. Already surrounded by other art establishments, the Institute integrates in the creative quarter on Hamburg’s map. Placed alongside the river, the building animates the waterfront and is directly accessible from the dike. The welcoming gesture of the ramp descending from the north side serves as an outdoor porch leading to the main entrance. The passage from the centre to the Institute offers a crossing through diverse acoustic thresholds of the city, from the loud surroundings of the highway to the well-insulated interiors dedicated to music.

The project is conceived as a mass with voids, where the carved-out volumes act as sound cavities of different acoustic qualities and the remaining spaces function as the in-between buffer zones. While the circulation isolates the rooms acoustically, the open atrium also functions as a navigation tool. The Institute provides spaces to wander encouraging a spontaneous use and discovery of new soundscapes. The sequence of rooms enables the users to transform from passive recipients to active co-creators of their experience.

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