30.7.2010

Aduana de Taylor Museum

This work outlines the transformations experienced by one of the most important sites of Buenos Aires -capital city of Argentina- throughout an entire cycle, from the 16th century to the present.

Limited by the River, close but still absent, by Huergo and Madero Avenues and by a succession of refurbished docks of the former Puerto Madero and with the current «Casa Rosada» (House of the National Government) in the very centre, the area concentrates buildings and spaces that have represented the political, economic, military and popular power of the Republic of Argentina. Besides, the site was -and remains- the realm of public and everyday life for thousands of citizens.

On the forthcoming celebrations of the Bicentenary of the Nation, th- Government develops a series of projects aimed to revitalise this area and has launched the works to refurbish and enlarge the Museum of “Casa Rosada” and the “New Customs” or “Taylor Customs”, allocating a special area for the display of «Plastic Exercise», a mural painting created in 1933 by the Mexican David Alfaro Siqueiros – with the collaboration of the Argentine artists Spilimbergo, Castagnino and Berni and the Uruguayan Director Lazarus- stated as an asset of national artistic and historical interest in 2003.

The “New Customs” Project was originally designed in 1855 by the British architect Edward Taylor adjoining the rear wall of the ancient Buenos Aires fort, overlooking the river. This was the first public building of large dimensions and its semi circular shape comprised five floors of warehouse and 51 vaulted rooms surrounded by galleries. The project for the refurbishment of the New Customs -best known as Taylor Customs- presents 5 main issues: the refurbishment of the building and the vaulted underground galleries, the connection of the galleries with the House of Government, the roofing and protection of the ancient “maneuvers patio” for the installation of “Plastic Exercise” by Siqueiros, the incorporation of new technical areas for the House of Government Museum and the development of archeological research where the museum is to be completed with technical and administrative sectors. The design proposes minimum intervention of the already existent, the non interruption of the views towards the House of Government and a special focus on the accessibility and safety of the site.

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