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Lillehammer Museum & Cinema; Snøhetta

Nicely wrapped: Second extension to Lillehammer Museum & Cinema

The architects at Snøhetta, who see this further commission as a great honour, have sought to connect all the existing parts of the complex in a logical and coherent way. Integration of art plays a central role in the project, whether concerning the design of the grounds or the buildings themselves.

The original building of 1964 is seen today as a classic representation of the architectural style of its time.  The expansion of 1994 involved a separate, distinct building that sought to bridge the architectural language of the sixties and contemporary elements.

In the second expansion measure, Snøhetta has inserted a new exhibition hall – the Weidemannsalen – to connect the two existing institutions, plus two cinema theatres have been added and the cinema has been renovated.

Rooted in the idea of having art hover over a transparent basis, the new exhibition hall features a ground-floor children's workshop with floor-to-ceiling windows, topped by a cantilevered gallery clad in a dynamic metal façade. This makes the effect of an outsized gift wrapped in crinkled metallic foil.

The gallery is dedicated to the works of the Lillehammer artist Jakob Weidemann (1923-2001). Its 'metallic wrapping' reflects the surroundings and changes in appearance with the light. Created by Bård Breivik (1948-2016), a Norwegian artist who passed away last year, it is made from highly polished steel with crinkles up to some 25 centimetres deep.

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