David Chipperfield Stirling Prize
The Stirling Prize for 2007 has been awarded to the Museum of Modern Literature in Marbach am Neckar, Germany, designed by David Chipperfield Architects. With a spare colonnade around its boxy, minimalist form, the Museum (Literaturmuseum der Moderne) is something of a neoclassical Parthenon, helping the larger cluster of buildings — which also includes the National Schiller Museum (1903) and the Archive for German Literature (1970s) — come together as a seeming Acropolis atop its ridge overlooking the River Neckar.
The Museum of Modern Literature houses texts by 20th-century German authors, brought together into one collection after German Reunification. In what the jury recognized as a "tough brief," David Chipperfield Architects was charged with creating a building to celebrate books and manuscripts that the general public is allowed only very limited access to. The building itself thus becomes a significant part of the visitor's experience.
The 3,800-square-meter (40,900-square-foot) new building offers an intimate entrance on its uphill side, facing the National Schiller Museum, while on its downhill side it invites visitors across an open terrace overlooking the valley.
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