Taller Mauricio Rocha’s Anahuacalli Museum extension wins Mies Crown Hall Americas Prize

Exterior of museum in Mexico City

Taller Mauricio Rocha‘s “fearless, heartfelt, and original” extension of Juan O’Gorman and Diego Rivera’s Anahuacalli Museum in Mexico City has won the Mies Crown Hall Americas Prize.

The biennial prize, which is awarded by the Illinois Institute of Technology College of Architecture, was given to the Anahuacalli Museum for the sensitive addition to a historic building and its landscaping.

“The way the museum extension mingles with the landscape speaks volumes about where architecture is headed, and the way it honors the past is fearless, heartfelt, and original,” said juror Julie Eizenberg, principal at KoningEizenberg Architecture.

Mauricio Rocha anahuacalli extension
Taller Mauricio Rocha has won the Mies Hall Crown Prize for its Anahuacalli Museum extension

The extension comprises three new structures for the complex in Pedregal, an area in southern Mexico City famous for its volcanic stone, which was utilised in the construction of the original museum.

Modernist architect Juan O’Gorman and renowned artist Diego Rivera designed the museum in 1964, as a home for Rivera’s extensive collection of Mesoamerican art and cultural objects.

Select renovations were also made to the existing structures.

Anahuacalli extension
It was among six finalists for the prize

The extension aimed to be light on the landscape, working with the central square of the original plan that orients a series of pavilions, galleries and facilities.

The new, long structures are characterised by their louvred facades, material consistency – achieved through the use of concrete, machine-cut stone and dark wood – and treads that suspend the additions above the delicate environment.

“Mauricio Rocha proposes a typology of independent and permeable volumes, giving continuity to the floor of the existing plaza and, in turn, the rough and irregular topography of the natural lava flow,” said jury chair Sandra Barclay, co-founder of Lima-based studio Barclay & Crousse.

Rocha’s studio, whose work includes a courthouse in Pátzcuaro Mexico, will receive a $50,000 (USD) stipend for the prize.

The other finalists shortlisted for the prize included a number of projects from North and South America.

Anahuacalli extension walkway
The work was cited for its delicate intervention and continuation of the structure’s original material schema

Among these was Colectivo C733‘s Guadalupe Market, also in Mexico, as well as Johnston Marklee’s The Menil Drawing Institute in Texas. One project from Canada, Patkau Architecture‘s Polygon Gallery in North Vancouver, was selected.

From South America, José Cubilla‘s Valois Housing Building in Paraguay and Park in the Prado neighborhood by Medllín’s Secretary of Infrastructure were in the running. More information on the finalists can be found here.

The photography is by Rafael Gamo.

The post Taller Mauricio Rocha's Anahuacalli Museum extension wins Mies Crown Hall Americas Prize appeared first on Dezeen.