Thursday, December 29, 2016
Short Story: Grand Egyptian Museum Design Awarded
A journey towards ancient Egyptian culture will be the main theme of the Grand Egyptian Museum’s exhibition design, writes Nevine El-Aref.
In the halls dedicated to hosting the collection of the golden boy king Tutankhamun at the planned Grand Egyptian Museum (GEM) in Giza, officials from the Ministry of Antiquities and local and international media people gathered this week to mark the announcement of the company that has won the bid to produce the new museum’s exhibition design.
Minister of Antiquities Khaled Al-Enany announced that the German company Atelier Brückner had won the tender launched six months ago to start building the exhibition design of the GEM.
The Ministry of Antiquities had launched a tender almost six months ago among 20 international and local companies. A committee that included Egyptian and foreign experts in architecture, museology, law and administration had evaluated the work of the tendering companies and made a short list of four from the United States, France, Canada and Germany. Atelier Brückner then won the bid.
“The soft opening of the GEM is scheduled for mid-2018, but we are working hard to reach December 2017,” Al-Enany said, adding that the official opening was planned for 2022.
Supervisor-General of the GEM Tarek Tewfik said that the winning company was an outstanding global company in the field of designs for exhibitions and museums. It has implemented 316 projects in different countries and won more than 200 international awards in the field.
The company is to design both the grand staircase hall and the two halls dedicated to display Tutankhamun’s funerary collection at the GEM. The grand staircase hall will put on show a collection of 100 royal colossi, blocks and reliefs, among them the gigantic colossus of Ramses II transported in 2006 to the GEM from Ramses Square in downtown Cairo.
The halls of Tutankhamun’s collection will display the funerary collection of the boy king, which includes 5,000 artefacts among them 3,000 objects that have never been put on display before. These items, Tewfik said, were stored in the Egyptian Museum in Tahrir Square. He told Al-Ahram Weekly that the new halls were 7,000 metres square and would be divided into four areas each representing a chamber of Tutankhamun’s tomb.
“This is the suggested idea from which the main design of the Tutankhamun halls will be created,” Tewfik said, adding that the cost of the design was included in the overall cost of the GEM project.
“We were very honoured to be invited to attend this bidding process, and of course to finally win it. We will do our best to perform in the best possible way to make the dream come true,” Uwe Rudolf Brückner, founder and creative director of Atelier Brückner, told the Weekly.
The company is a leading design office for museums and exhibitions, architecture, expo pavilions, brand and visitor centres. “As a general planner we cover all design phases and disciplines — exhibition design/fit out, architecture, scenography, graphics, lighting, media and content — through all design phases,” Brückner said. “We have created 11 different designs for museums as well as a number of permanent and temporary exhibitions worldwide.”... READ MORE.