Following four years of construction, Design Museum Holon has announced January 31st 2010 as the greatly anticipated inauguration date of the award-winning building by Ron Arad Architects. Constructed of five sinuous bands of varying shades of COR-TEN (weathered steel), Design Museum Holon is Arad's first architectural project of this scale and the pinnacle of a sixteen-year urban regeneration programme, a process which is transforming the city of Holon, central Israel, into a global epicentre for culture and education.
Design Museum Holon's mission is to explore the impact of design and the relationship of design to urban spaces and every day life. The museum is committed to pioneering a creative arena for the exploration and examination of design principles and interpretations. As a leading hub for innovation in the field of design within Israel and the world it will strive to foster international dialogue, highlighting the importance of quality design and its relevance to our lives.
Ron Arad comments: "Holon is a city which is re-inventing itself culturally, with ambitious plans that are investing a lot into culture. The concept of this museum in the Middle Eastern sun is just one instance. The city was brave enough to give Ron Arad Architects the design task and I hope that it is received well by the Municipality and the public.'
The project was initiated by Holon's Mayor, Mr. Motti Sasson and Managing Director, Ms. Hana Hertsman who invited Ron Arad to create an iconic building, which would provide visitors with an immersive design environment. Ron Arad Architects has been involved in the project from the program development stage through the conceptual stage to building completion.
Hana Hertsman, comments: "Design Museum Holon not only highlights the role of design and culture in Holon's day-to-day life, but also the city's influence globally; I believe it will be a beacon within Israel and far beyond."
The new museum joins Holon's Mediatheque, a cultural centre which includes the National Cartoon Museum, repertoire theatre with original productions, cinematheque, material library and public library.
The design museum building will be inaugurated with a gala event six weeks prior to the opening of the first exhibition to allow attendees and visitors an opportunity to experience the building's architecture as the original design object of the museum.
The annual program will showcase site-specific exhibitions by invited international curators as well as travelling exhibitions. In addition an interactive archive with digital components will be developed for the theoretical and practical research of design as well as a historical Israeli collection. This will lay the foundation for Design Museum Holon's permanent collection which will be unveiled in five to seven years. Ron Arad's design for the museum, demonstrates an extremely sculptural approach, combining ingenuous and playful functionality with highly visual design. In reference to his approach he says: "Every project is unique; each one invites a different response. When we started working on Design Museum Holon, it was like a white canvas, things developed and a direction was formed. We created a hierarchy of outdoor spaces so you walk in under the building into a semi-covered yard, where you have a choice to take the air-conditioned route or one exposed to the elements. The building envelope is not just a pretty space; it's also a structure."