The United Nations Global Cultural Centre (Museum) is based on pushing and using
architecture as a tool to build bridges between the worlds’ different races and cultures.
This can be done through exhibiting all the various issues that challenge the world from
social- war, racism, gender discrimination, religious prejudice to environmental issues
like global warming, natural disasters that lead to disease outbreaks, hunger and many
other issues that affect each continent so we as a human race can begin to address
them through exposure, learning and embracing our differences having understood
why each culture is different and in doing so ultimately add to the global culture.
Only through learning and experiencing other cultures can we truly understand each other and build a healthy respect for our differences, thereby building bridges between
each continent and working as one global race that values, respects and embraces our differences whilst learning from each other to improve each culture where
injustice is pushed through the respective culture having carefully protected and preserved it at the same time. The global Centre (Museum) would be located at Crossbones
garden, Southwark, London where many paupers mostly women and children were buried. The location (London) is ideal given its historic relevance but also as
many tourists from all over the world would pass through London, they could mesh when they visit, and hopefully interact and learn through the exhibitions and meeting
people from another part of the world at the centre. The building would have a past (historic section) to educate us of what has shaped and influenced each culture/continent,
a present section to shed light on the current issues each region (culture) faces having being exposed and understood what led them there from the past, and a
future section to warn of what could become of each continent (culture) and eventually the world if the present issues are not addressed, like the past issues that led to
The Centre will have 3 floors, the Basement floor dedicated to past/historic exhibitions that reflect these
Past/Historic Section - Basement Level
This section will focus on the historical/past aspects of each continental gallery, exploring and displaying the evolution of each culture and major inter-continental issues that hugely shaped the modern cultures of all
these regions. These can vary from Slavery and Colonialism in Africa to the Holocaust in in Europe, or the influence of drug trafficking in South America, Slavery and the civil rights movement in North America, the
influence of communism and the impact of world war bombing in Asia. This will give the visitors a broader perspective and hopefully a deeper understanding of the thinking of people from different parts of the world.
Present/Current Section - Ground Level
The present level is reserved for artists to have exhibitions that reflect the current issues faced in each region. These may be a direct result of some of the past/ historical issues associated with any of these regions.
For example the Black lives matter movement in North America is hugely influenced by the racial tension that is has being and continues to exist in US from the civil rights movement in the 60s and beyond
that as well. Artists will be allowed spaces to display artworks or have live performance arts that can vary in method and size. Given the present/current theme so this gallery level, the artworks will be changing
frequently and no permanent artwork will be displayed on this level to ensure the
Future Section – 1st Level
The future level is dedicated to forecast exhibitions that will reflect a possible future, better or worse in response to the present issues we face and how the future may be shaped depending on actions take or lack
thereof. This is intended to alarm the public to the present issues and ensue inspiration to take action for a better tomorrow, shaped by an aware, responsible global citizen of today. For example, an artist may
exhibit the possible future of certain countries and regions of the world engulfed by the sea 50/100 years from now, due to a lack of action on the present day climate change issues today. Such exhibitions would
elevate our sense of the moment and taking action on various issues before the outcome is irreversible.
A central elevator is placed in the middle of the void to allow circulation for everyone, especially for disabled public.
On the edges of each gallery, ramp bridges will connect the roof courtyard to the outer floating bridges allowing
for a seamless circulation for all throughout the architecture from every gallery. The elevator will go up to the
roof courtyard, thereby connecting the roof to the basement historic section ensuring all levels are accessible as
it passes along the interlinking bridges on the present/ground level and bridge to the floating circuit bridge at the
future(1st) level as well. This central elevator shaft will also help in bearing the load of the roof courtyard along with
all other structural element.
The roof of each gallery is then lifted up 3m on each corner edge to ensure the building is tilted sloping inward
towards the central courtyard for maximum natural light exposure and penetration. This will also help in easy water
collection for use within the building for toilets and plants.
The frame structure used will enable free open spatial allocation of exhibition spaces that are required
by artists and curators. The structure will also make the roof accessible for the public by bearing the
load of visitors above as well as the load of photovoltaic glazed panels which will allow natural light
into the building for the roof faces that have being oriented to maximize solar absorption and light
penetration into the galleries.
In response to the immediate context, the building will be clad in gold brick tiles which is the
main material used in all the surrounding buildings, maintaining the character of the area. The
interior however will be in white concrete, which is ideal for exhibitions as a neutral colour.
However each gallery will have a half section of it clad in photovoltaic glazing to allow for natural
light into the building during the day and energy absorption to power the artificial lighting at
night. Hence, each galley will be split in halve along the middle section of the gallery by a supporting
structural wall which will divide the gallery into spaces for controlled light for the artists
and curators and half the spaces for those who want to engage with the natural lighting.
DESIGN: SASHA CHAPARADZA