Fangshan Tangshan Geopark National Museum | The Plan
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Fangshan Tangshan Geopark National Museum

Studio Odile Decq

In the age of faith, great churches were erected to enshrine the bones of a saint, and credulous pilgrims flocked to venerate them. Museums are the cathedrals of our secular times, and in China a showcase (of more than 20,000 square meter) was commissioned by local authorities to celebrate the discovery of two early human skulls. “Smash the Old” was the slogan of Mao’s Cultural Revolution. In China today, surviving fragments of ancient times are eagerly exploited for their tourist potential, and the Fangshan Tangshan Geopark National Museum is a product of the drive to bring culture to the masses.

China offers a welcome opportunity to Western architects to realize their dreams in a form and on a scale that is becoming increasingly rare in cash-strapped Europe and America. 

Odile Decq was prompted by a Chinese friend to enter a competition to...

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