The Gallery of Prestvannet: Antorip Choudhury

The competition asked for a hybrid of a museum and a cultural center in the Tromsø, Norway – that was meant for the enthusiasts of the arctic experience and visitors around the world. Enveloped by thick woods and in the center of the city nests Tromsø’s largest lake, Prestvannet. Located on the highest point on the central part of the island, Prestvannet serves as an important natural space because of its natural poetic quality, and also a fundamental nesting place for different types of birds. It is a distinct place to spot the Northern Lights in the Arctic night during the winter its open for ice-skating. Already being a cultural hub it receives a lot of local and foreign visitors in the area.

The essential idea behind the project was to resonate with the built landscape of the context and reinterpret it into a hybrid of the museum and cultural centre. The centre, equipment of cultural comprehension, is born taking the advantages of the idea that geographically encompasses the country of Norway, the cluster of islands. In this context, the islands are being represented by the different programs which are interlinked to each other by bridges with water and skylights sequestering them from each other. The functional blocks and common spaces emerge from the earth creating landmarks in the tectonic landscape with water flowing through them conceiving the islands of Norway in the built form. The uniquely shaped blocks of the program creates a dialogue in between the landscape and built form, as they emerge from the tectonic plane, while waterway flows through and around it to divide the volumes and openings all around it ensures that the dynamic view of the lake and the forest is unhindered.

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