Guggenheim Bilbao

Phillip Johnson, the dean of American architects called Guggenheim Museum Bilbao "the greatest building of our century". Designed by Frank O. Gehry, this sprawling, organic plan resembles a living organism, like some gigantic metallic flower growing along the bank of a river. This unique Museum built on a 32,500 square meter site in the center of Bilbao represents an amazing construction feat. On one side it runs down to the waterside of the Nervión River, 16 meters below the level of the rest of the city of Bilbao. One end is pierced through by the huge Puente de La Salve, one of the main access routes into the city.
It is a truly divine architectural achievement of the century. Concepts of architecture for art's sake, today's museum buildings are not only "storage" for art pieces, but the building itself is an element of art.
The choice of Bilbao as the venue for one of the Guggenheim European centers is best understood in the context of the initiatives implemented by the Basque authorities as a contribution to the process of revitalizing the Basque Country’s recession-plagued economic structure. These initiatives were also seen as a means of increasing the chances of the city’s metropolitan area becoming the major reference point for European regions on the Atlantic seaboard
The Guggenheim Museum Bilbao is one of the most important ingredients in the plan to redevelop the city of Bilbao. The plan, involving a number of major projects conceived by some of the world’s most prestigious architects, includes the work now in progress to increase operational capacity at the city’s port, the restoring of the city’s airport, a mission entrusted to Spanish architect Santiago Calatrava, a new Conference and Performing Arts Center, designed by Federico Soriano, the construction of a metropolitan railway – much of it underground – designed by Sir Norman Foster, and a new footbridge crossing the river a…


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