Chipperfield: Fundación/Colección Jumex


David Chipperfield Architects has been appointed to design the new Fundación/Colección Jumex in Mexico City – a 4,000 square meter building that will double the existing exhibition space. Part of a larger masterplan for the area, the project is scheduled to begin construction in March of 2010.

La Colección Jumex is considered to be an important collection of contemporary Latin American art, holding more than 2000 works. If completed on schedule, the project’s opening in 2011 will coincide with the 50th anniversary of tLa Colección.

Located on a triangular site, the project appears to be a series of staked volumes which step upwards to form terraces and courtyard spaces – creating a variety of outdoor spaces, while bringing natural light into the exhibition spaces.


I’m sure that more on this project will be available as it progresses – but initially the images jumped out at me. That, and the contrast from one side of the building to the other. While there’s not much to go off of, it looks as if the facade addressing the street is flat – with these stacked boxes creating some kind of uniform, coplanar surface. Then on the opposite side the building steps down into [or up out of, depending on how you look at it] the park – creating terraces and balconies that open on to this public green space. Simple, but very nice.

As for the images – sure, they’re very basic and probably represent some initial concept of the project – but for some reason I find it refreshing when a firm as renowned as Chipperfield’s puts out such simple, clean images. I’m still hoping that the end of the so-called ‘age of excess’ in architecture means the end of over-processed, realer than photo-realistic, renderings.

Posted: June 11th, 2009
at 11:51am by orangemenace

Categories: architecture,museum

Comments: 3 comments


3 Responses to 'Chipperfield: Fundación/Colección Jumex'

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  1. what’s wrong with realer than photo-realistic? aren’t renderings about communicating an experience – often related to detail/texture as well as form and space? these renderings don’t really tell me anything – a few white cubes on a green plain. also, what makes these pristine boxes more authentic/specific/telling than any other shape with a floor in it?


    14 Jun 09 at 7:03 pm


  2. well, i think that’s a fair response.

    mostly, i’m saying that projects in their early stages don’t need to be super-photorealistic. i’ve worked with some large firms on large-scale, high-end projects, and the renderings being produced early in the game could be insane. it was all very “horse before the cart” -ish.

    but I’m going to stick to my point here and say that the problem with some over-processed renderings is that they get trashy real fast. to me, the majority of firms don’t do it well. that isn’t to say it should be all one way, or all the other.

    honestly, i think these computer renderings are hurting people’s ability to function within the profession. i say that, and i’m only 26 [and i know, to an extent, how to use some of this software]. it seems like knowing how to get the perfect reflection off some glass is more important than the actual design. and as far as firm’s are concerned, you knowing how to render is definitely more important than your ability to design. we’re a pigeon-holed generation.

    but yeh – these are obviously really early-stage images shown in the post, so there’s lots of missing information. i’m just glad they didn’t fill in the gaps with shit, which seems to be popular. some lights here, birds there, trails of tail-lights zipping by, some over-used fake-looking sky effects, etc. that, and i just flat out think that a great deal of photo-realistic rendering is simply tacky, and isn’t necessarily conveying the idea more successfully. to assume that photo-realistic image are better at “communicating an experience – often related to detail/texture as well as form and space”, to me, is naive – and an all too commonly held belief.


    14 Jun 09 at 10:17 pm


  3. I agree with you on the issue of flashiness vs./preceding good design, but I think that diagrammatic, design phase renderings are one thing, and communicative renderings (the kind posted on blogs) are another.

    But really, how can you discount the reflections on the glass, a plausible sky, and other such details that encapsulate a proposed experience? Aren’t these are also the ingredients in the design, to be considered / communicated?


    18 Jun 09 at 8:10 pm



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