House of Art and Culture

This new arts building in Beirut comprises two performance spaces, a cinema, art galleries and administration offices. Conceived as a simple semi-permeable box, the solid forms of the auditoria are clearly expressed and appear to float in the space. The eastern elevation is completely transparent, revealing a dramatic five-storey public space which, at night, becomes a giant stage upon which the activity of the building is played out. A grand staircase rises through the space connecting the many levels and offering views out across the city. All art galleries are positioned at the top of the building, taking full advantage of the natural light. Addressing the building’s requirement to house both traditional and experimental arts events, the main auditorium is a flexible space.