Zhejiang University Museum of Art and Archaeology

Zhejiang University, one of the oldest and most prestigious universities in China, inaugurated the School of Art and Archaeology in 2019. Zhejiang University Museum of Art and Archaeology (ZJUMAA) is the first teaching museum in China.

Located in Hangzhou, ZJUMAA is sited along one of the city’s many waterways and connects the city to the University. It is the first building constructed as part of the West Zijingang Campus expansion. The program includes a 16,500-sm museum with exhibition galleries, art storage and conservation labs, café and bookstore; an 8,400-sm academic wing with classrooms, offices, library and labs; and a 300-seat auditorium shared by the museum and school.

The building design, inspired by flat-perspective traditional Chinese landscape painting, reflects the juxtaposition between old and new. Solid forms, clad in masonry block inspired by traditional local brick, house galleries, art storage, conservation, and educational spaces, while a transparent, light-weight steel and glass structure allows lobby, circulation and gathering spaces to open to the landscape and the public.

The long low volume of the Museum lobby, and a smaller-scale entrance portal, mediates the scale of this very large building, and the glass façade provides transparent entrance for the public. The galleries, café, and store are arranged directly off the lobby. Exhibition spaces include two galleries for small art and objects, a 6m high, sky-lit gallery for large-scale artifacts and installations, and a large-scale, black box gallery. The Museum is punctuated by courtyards that help orient patrons and provide natural light.

The academic wing is housed in a four-story bar facing the campus. Classrooms and conservation spaces face north to allow for ample indirect daylight. The academic wing has a dedicated entry in the northeast corner of the building, adjacent to bike parking, with circulation and gathering space offering southerly views.