fjmtstudio in collaboration with Jasmax and designTRIBE awarded the prestigious World Architecture Festival Inside – Public Building Award, for the extraordinary Auckland War Memorial Museum, Te Ao Marama South Atrium.
Auckland War Memorial Museum was established in Auckland Domain in 1929 with a significant neo-classical building of generous volumes, proportions, rich materiality, detailing and powerful stained-glass roof lighting. Future additions in 1960 extended south albeit with simpler details and materiality. The 2006 works internalised the South Atrium, with a new public entry and inserted the “tanoa” (a pacific bowl form).
Sited on Pukekawa, in Auckland Domain, the European architecture was at odds with the cultural heritage of Tamaki Makarau. Inside, the visitor experience required transforming to acknowledge mana whenua, and evolve to be relevant to Auckland’s diverse population. The iterative additions blocked natural connections between the north and south leading to a poor visitor orientation experience.
These issues were addressed in the Future Museum Masterplan, unlocking the potential of the nationally significant building to create transformational bicultural architecture, enabling dialogue between New Zealand’s colonial history and today.