Funchal, Portugal

Status: Concept Design

International Design Competition:

Renovation of the Natural History Museum of Funchal, Madeira – 3rd prize

Project value: 3m euro
Collaboration: Thorben Roth Design

Promoted by the City Hall of Funchal, Madeira, the program for this competition required not only a renovation of the Natural History Museum, but also the modernization of the exhibition display system providing the Museum with a whole new image.
Our approach was based on trying to find the principles in Nature, a vortex street that streams slightly southeast of the Madeira Island and a rare species of Laurissilva trees that are unique to this territory.

The idea for the outside space was to assimilate the vortex motion and recreate the sumptuous cloud shapes in the new canopy of the garden, where the existing trees are maintained and valued as the support for a wicker structure, a material very popular in the city of Funchal.

For the interior we proposed similar principles, responding functionally to the program of having five differently themed rooms, each being elements of the tree of life. This connects natural and simulated worlds, bringing them closer.

For the reinforcement of the balustrades, we’ve used printed glass with a rasterized image of the laurissilva of Madeira, as well as perforated ceilings and supergraphics.