Tapestry Museum in Portugal By CVDB Architects | Yellowtrace

Tapestry Museum in Portugal By CVDB Architects | Yellowtrace

 

CVDB Arquitectos have converted an old hospital in the tiny town of Arraiolos in Portugal, into a Tapestry Museum. The town is famed for the embroidered rugs and carpets it produces, so for the 3300 inhabitants that live there, the museum celebrates the local cultural identity.

The exterior skin of the building remains largely intact, flowing seamlessly with the character of the surrounding streetscape. The only new external addition is the delicately crafted stair shaft, which hides quietly at the back of the site.



Tapestry Museum in Portugal By CVDB Architects | Yellowtrace

Tapestry Museum in Portugal By CVDB Architects | Yellowtrace

Tapestry Museum in Portugal By CVDB Architects | Yellowtrace

Tapestry Museum in Portugal By CVDB Architects | Yellowtrace

 

The interior, by contrast, is decidedly contemporary. Two key gestures make this interior dynamically magic; the sculpted ceiling and the marbled surface that unravels beneath it. The marble is local to the area and peels up into the door reveals, walls and joinery. The movement of the veining is exaggerated in the whiteness of the surrounds.

 

Tapestry Museum in Portugal By CVDB Architects | Yellowtrace

Tapestry Museum in Portugal By CVDB Architects | Yellowtrace

 

The existing vaulted ceiling sets the tone for the sculpted ceiling. Refinished in crisp white, the curvaceous form is made vivid. The newly added skylight shafts appear like paper thin angled wafers. Held off the face of the walls, they slide gently into the ceiling space and are angled to control the dispersion of natural light.

For me, the exterior and interior seem worlds apart – but that’s not necessarily a bad thing. How surreal and utterly delightful it must be to enter a space and discover an entirely different world hidden inside.

Text by Ella Leoncio for Yellowtrace.




[Photography by FG+SG – architectural photography, via ArchDaily.]

 

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