How can we fit in with the spirit of the area? The former wet docks are so intimately associated with the city’s industrial heritage. This place belongs to the river. The water is its life force, the power of nature reclaiming these man-made banks. As the broad river winds gently towards its destiny, one of its curves forms a special stronghold: the entrance to the port, the gateway to the city. Such a place needs to be watched over by a benevolent landmark, a guardian angel for the port and the city. A keystone, a vertical icon on this horizontal skyline, a beacon that can be seen far and wide – commanding the banks of the river.
A shape as smooth and rounded as an ancient pebble, weightless lines rolling majestically down towards the water. The essence of fluidity. This form is clothed in swathes of light, shimmering and fluctuating from purple to gold as the viewer moves. Ethereal, enigmatic, atmospheric, rising magnificently from the mists of the river. Inspired by the spirit of the place, dedicated to the spirit of wine.
Our visitors arrive at the Forum by climbing the sweeping staircase, curving gently upwards to the exhibition. At the head of the stairs, visitors will be faced immediately with the exhibition, and will soon realise that the layout is designed to evoke the idea of a ‘whirlwind’ – like the circular movement which awakens a wine before tasting. Everything the visitors see will reflect this motion – the forms, the light, the images and texts. The exhibition is thus laid out along a circular route: visitors start at the Forum and eventually arrive back there, after a journey through a flowing space with no corners.
The glass walls offer a spectacular view of the river Garonne, flowing serenely around the building. Inside we have recreated this sense of flow, running serenely between obstacles which seem to have been smoothed and rounded by the passing water. Visitors are always conscious of the presence of Bordeaux. Through the windows, the panoramic view reminds visitors where they are: in a city where wine reigns supreme, and which provides the point of departure for a voyage into the world of wine.
Waves on the facade, oscillating lines engraved on the glass, glass cladding, wooden structure.Location: Bordeaux, France Architects: X-TU Architects | Nicola Desmaziere + Anouk Legendre Competition team: Mathias Lukacs, Alexandre Caussel, Joan Tarragon, Stefania Maccagnan, Sophie Lee Kien On, Thomas Van Gaver, Pierre-Arthur Thibaudeau Development team: Mathias Lukacs, Joan Tarragon, Stefania Maccagnan, Patrycja Ogonowska, Gaelle Le Borgne, Sylvain Raillard, Kathryn Frost Client: Ville de bordeaux Program: cultural, museum of wine Planning: competition: April 2011 Contract: May 2011 Completion: January 2014 Total floor area: 12 927 m² shon with 2 800 m² of permanent exhibition Total site area: 13 600 m² Cost: 28.5m€ HT + 8.3m€ HT [building + museography] Partners Museographic consultant: Cassonman Engineering: Snc Lavalin Environmental engineer: Le Sommer Lighting: 8’18’’ Acoustic: Peutz Identifying: Autobus Imperial Programation: Lord Culture Olfactory design: B. Mautin Acoustic/sound design: R. Cahen Security: Casso + Cie