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Lacaton & Vassal completes Dunkirk modern art gallery

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Paris-based practice Lacaton & Vassal has created a modern art gallery at a former shipyard in Dunkirk

The architects designed a 9,000m2 glass-fronted replica of the historic AP2 ship-building workshop next to the original.

Their six-floor creation houses the Nord Pas de Calais region’s contemporary art collection as well as a cinema, offices and a café.

Visitors are be able to enjoy views over the North Sea and of the beach used for the famous evacuation of British troops during the Second World War.

The AP2 building, which closed in 1988, will be used for temporary exhibitions and concerts.

The new building has an outer skin of polycarbonate and ETFE. Its glass facade is topped by a work in pink neon by British artist Scott King.

Lacaton & Vassal said in a statememt that AP2 was a ‘singular and symbolic object’.

‘Its internal volume is immense, bright, impressive. Its potential for uses is exceptional,’ the architects added.

‘The new building juxtaposes delicately without competing nor fading.’

The gallery opened this month as part of Dunkirk’s year as regional capital of culture.

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