National Museum of Contemporary Art
Adrian Spirescu has inserted a modernist vocabulary into the House of the People, the prestige project of former dictator Nicolae Ceausescu. The architectural approach for the museum, which is keen to distinguish itself from the palace but does not want to destroy the existing frame, can be seen as a first step towards the semantic subversion, deconstruction and reconstruction of an anti-urban monolith. It has the usual neutrality of a museum of contemporary art; on the upper levels (unfinished when the communist regime fell) the principle of the white box has been consistently applied. In the ground-floor halls the delirious decoration has been tempered by covering it with white paint, and the links with the new elements are clearly marked. Finally, the added level, the glass towers of the external elevators and a glass canopy, signal the intervention from the outside. The location of the neighbourhoods demolished to make way for the palace, corresponds to a memorial space outside.