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Remai Modern

27 Mar 2018
Image Credit: Adrien Williams
Architectural Credit: Design: KPMB Architects; Architect of Record: Architecture49 Inc.
Location: Saskatoon, SK
Architects: Design: KPMB Architects; Architect of Record: Architecture49 Inc.
Date of Completion: 2017

OAA Design Excellence Awards Finalist

The architecture pushes forward Saskatoon’s vision of being an emerging creative city. Located along the South Saskatchewan River on Treaty 6 Territory and traditional homeland of the Métis, the city is surrounded by vast prairies. Remai Modern is built to be a significant cultural hub, with a specific commitment to Indigenous artists and local communities. The gallery space is designed to international museum standards for modern and contemporary art. The program consists of 11 exhibition galleries, a 150-seat theatre, a children’s activity area, fireplace, design shop and restaurant with public spaces combined into a 126,000-square-foot space.

Site plan
Drawing Credit: KPMB Architects

Gallery and public spaces (above); Ground floor plan and section
Drawing Credit: KPMB Architects
Photo Credit: Tom Arban

Atrium looking west
Photo Credit: Adrien Williams 

The form evokes regional agrarian traditions of low-rise rectilinear sheds and barns. Four cantilevered horizontal volumes engage the river’s edge to the south and Second Avenue to the east. The copper-coloured screens project a welcoming imaging and provide solar shading during warmer seasons. Copper metal screens serve as an homage to Saskatoon’s historic landmark, the Bessborough Hotel. Double-height atria and spaces draw light deep into the floor plate and gain passive solar heat. 

Second floor terrace, looking east to the River.
Photo Credit: Adrien Williams 

Third floor atrium view, looking south to the River.
Photo Credit: Adrien Williams 
The project contributed greatly to Saskatoon’s gross domestic product (GDP) and established itself as an influencer in the international art world. The power and vision of the gallery was secured by its namesake patron, Ellen Remai. The New York Times listed Remai Modern among the top eight art destinations of 2017 nine months before its opening. In the first few weeks, the new museum sold three thousand memberships.

South side, looking west.
Photo Credit: Adrien Williams 

South elevation, viewed from River Landing.
Photo Credit: Adrien Williams

View north over the South Saskatchewan River from Rotary Park
Photo Credit: Adrien Williams 

The entire gallery is designed to inspire transformative experience to connect art, people and place. The open, transparent and generously scaled galleries and public realm prioritize civic participation and continuous dialogue with Indigenous artists and communities. The Remai Modern honours the legacy of its predecessor, the Mendel Art Gallery, as a vibrant destination for cultural and civic engagement.  


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April 15, 2018 12:56 by Anonymous
AWESOME Structure

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