“Constantin Brancusi” International Center, starting to take a genuine shape

Considering Brâncuşi’s past - related to the city of Craiova (South West Oltenia Region, Romania), his “second birthplace" as the artist himself once acknowledged - Dolj County Council decided to undertake a complex and ambitious project, in an endeavor to create a Center entirely dedicated to the genius of Constantin Brâncuși – the well-known Romanian modernist sculptor - and his works of art. And what place would have been more suitable for this impressive project than the courtyard of the Art Museum in Craiova? 

The Art Museum of Craiova - visited by FINCH partnership during the 2nd Interregional Workshop meeting and submitted by Romanian partners as one of FINCH good practices - is a historical monument located in the former Private Palace of the Jean Mihail family, built between 1900-1907, following the design of the French architect Paul Gottereau. The Museum hosts one of the largest Constantin Brâncuși collection, consisting of 6 works of art of the great sculptor and 6 objects that were commissioned to him or that he owned, a matter less known to the general public.

"Constantin Brancusi" International Center has been designed as an interactive cultural center, unique in the world. The underground gallery, with an area of almost 1,200 square meters, includes performance halls, conference and exhibition halls, but also oratory and creation workshops. The architectural proposal refers to the story of the Temple of Indore that was commissioned by Yeshwant Rao Holkar Maharaja of India to Brancusi but was never built.

While the main part of the Center is underground, the whole experience will be accentuated by the glass structure designed to be built at the surface. Therefore, the spiritual ascension that Brâncuşi proposed in the Temple of Indore will be complemented by the physical experience of lifting inside the cubic pavilion. Recently, the constructor approached the final stage of the project: the installation of the glass prism inside which large-scale interpretations of the Brancusi masterpieces “The Ovoid”- a compliment on his works of art and the “Măiastra” (The Master Bird) - inspired by the legendary mythic bird of Romanian folklore, can be found.

The Cube will develop a special relationship with Jean Mihail Palace, counting on a mutual architectural support. It will render the iconic sculpture of “Pasărea Măiastră” (the Master Bird) inside a giant “egg” – the Ovoid, an ensemble of glass about 12 meters high and weighing over 120 tons. The use of glass is a visionary element of the architect Dorin Ștefan, who pays homage to Constantin Brâncuși and adds value to the prestigious art institution by creating “a space of peace and contemplation in the vicinity of the ideational and artistic universe of Brâncuşi”, as the architect himself declares.

Currently, the development stage of the project is about 80%, 7 of the 8 glass foils being mounted. The deadline for completion is October 30, 2020, with the possibility of extension, due to the high degree of complexity of the works. The opening event is scheduled for early next year, so stay tuned! This cultural and tourist investment will soon become an attraction point of the city, which we warmly invite you to visit!