DO WE NEED A NEW COACH MUSEUM?

Lisbon Coach Museum Sculpted Keystone

Lisbon new Coach Museum by Paulo Mendes da Rocha

Our answer is: obviously not. Especially when the new building is a concrete eyesore which our poor broke country cannot afford to maintain (but, alas, has already built).

The exquisitely carved keystone on the current museum façade isn’t too happy with its deformed neighbour across the street either. Here, sadly, Prince Charles’s “monstrous carbuncle” has turned into a monstruous white elephant, dwarfing the elegant Royal Manege building which still houses the precious collection. Fortunately, as someone once said, monumentality is not attained with size, but with scale. And since the new museum has none, when all is said and done it recedes back into the corner of its own inhuman world and lets us enjoy the beauty of one of the most special places in the world.

Museu Nacional dos Coches, Lisboa

archived in EXTERIORS Giacomo AzzoliniKeystonesLisboaMuseumsNeoclassicalSculptureStonework
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