MNCARS Museum

Madrid, Spain 2005


The Temporary Rooms of the Reina Sofía Museum in Madrid posed a challenge as it was the first project where lighting control was of essential importance and became part of the lighting design to achieve the objectives set previously in the project. The temporary rooms had to be able to adapt to any exhibition held in the Museum. Therefore, the lighting had to be versatile and able to provide different scenes for the different types of exhibitions.

There were 4 proposed typologies to obtain the light versatility. The first one, the typology to illuminate the works by means of lanes with halogen spotlights and optical spot, flood and trimmer.The second typology was a direct light made by recessed downlights in the lower part of the slats, of halogen lamps, in order to generate a general light in the room.The third typology was the wallwashers disposed at 1.20 meters from the three walls that could carry works of art.

As a last typology, the indirect light was integrated into the upper part of the hanging slats and out of the visitors' view, which illuminated the whole room as if it were natural light. This typology gave the sensation that the rooms had large skylights, generating a relaxing atmosphere to contemplate the exposed pieces.


Client: Museo Nacional Centro de Arte Reina Sofía
Architect: AJN Atelier Jean Nouvel + b720 Arquitectos
Photo: ©Troll, artec3