The Cour d’Or Museum

On June 13th 2018, and in the presence of the President of Metz Métropole, Explorations Architecture inaugurated the new Museum entrance as well as the luminous reception area in the heart of the chapel.

The Cour d’Or Museum is located in the heart of Metz, close to Saint Etienne Cathedral, in a complex composed of Gallo-Roman thermal baths, the former Petits Carmes Abbey, and the Chèvremont granary which dates from 1457. The project concerned the Petits Carmes chapel built between 1670 and 1675 by the architect Giovanni Betto.
At the time of the contest in 2012, the chapel nave was used as a temporary exhibition space and storage area. The challenge put forward by the project management consultancy consisted in creating a new entrance to the museum through the former chapel, and a quality reception area worthy of the important art and history collections available at the museum.
The architectural and aesthetic stratifications of the building (decoration, antique vaults, Renaissance façade with superposed orders, 19th century panelling…) therefore raise issues regarding the continuity of a contemporary intervention in such a space.
The idea of a new reception area for the museum – more visible, more generous – involves significant modifications of the existing space in terms of itineraries, sequences, usage and aesthetics.

The main issues at stake within this project were :
– asserting a strong identity,
– the renewed image of the museum in keeping with its unique heritage,
– the practical integration of the new reception area into the museum educational itinerary,
– and the pursuit of overall cohesion.

The project is based on 3 key ideas :
‐ Opening up the Museum to the city
‐ Highlighting the ascent towards the Chapel
‐ Offering a real “tool” for the development of the Museum