Location: Gerês, Portugal.

Architect: Carvalho Araújo.

The Museu da Geira was designed with the intention of creating a mark on the land that would help to organize new developments. The building is situated on a platform that supports the Ethnographic Museum of Vilarinho das Furnas and some granaries, and it backs onto a wall, lending continuity to the existing platform. The museum is subtly included within the concept of the Roman Road, which structures the land and incorporates and organizes existing elements. The building is divided into two areas that can work independently, with the exhibition areas of the museum situated to the east of the road and the program for the area to the west of the road including a cyber-café, a didactic playroom, auditorium, and service area. The complex has a system of closure that allows for the two wings of the museum to be closed while still keeping the road open to traffic, allowing the rest of the amenities to function when it is not open. The building is made of stone, which was chosen as a solution of continuity with the existing elements, and the road that runs through the building is extremely important because it unites the whole complex in a simple and effective way, with a strong scenic and symbolic expression. This structural axis helps to organize the whole complex, simultaneously creating accesses to the existing museum, to the entrance area with a small car parking area, to the proposed museum, crossing it, and the future areas to be developed to the north. The Museu da Geira is a complementary museum that reinforces the idea of the crossing and the road.

Photo credit: Pedro Lobo.