New location and set design of the Museum of Fine Arts (Musée des Beaux-Arts) in Charleroi.
The overall project aims to transform the Defeld building, which housed the gendarmerie stables for more than a century, into a fine arts museum with a strong image that invites visitors to immerse themselves in the historic heart of Charleroi. Originally, this listed building shared its entrance around the esplanade of the police station, offering an indirect access from the public space. In order to accentuate the visibility of the museum from the Boulevard Mayence, the proposed project recreates an entrance from the public space by highlighting the latter by means of a monumental portico in architectural concrete. The only exterior intervention on the Defeld stables, the portico gives the museum its own identity, visually distinguishing itself from the nearby police tower. The gable facade constitutes the access portal in the manner of a narthex, an intermediate space marking the difference in status between these two public places that are the sidewalk and the agora. Forming an introductory preamble, the latter takes visitors on a contemplative journey where light and artworks are staged within a structured and modular space.