Adaptive reuse of Mumbai and Delhi museum
Photography: Deepshikha Jain
Mumbai and Delhi-based Morphogenesis has designed DAG in Mumbai and Delhi, which was to renovate a high-end retail paradigm and gallery for Indian contemporary art.
DAG Mumbai is built within a century-old four-storied structure, which is currently undergoing a strong cultural revival. Decades of neglect had damaged the cramped former warehouse, which was transformed into an impressive retrofit and adaptive reuse of colonial architecture. After extensive renovation, the design retained the local colonial heritage motifs in metal and wood, including the façade’s wrought-iron and stucco features.
The site features multi-functional and multidimensional areas, which include a library, an art gallery, display, storage and offices. Spread over 7,000 sq. ft., the galleries hold one of the world’s largest collections of Indian Modernist art – around 30,000 paintings divided between Mumbai and Delhi.
A calm and introspective design, the spatial compositions were structured into a series of reconfigurable rooms with sliding panes and moveable fretted screens for maximum exposure and circulation of artwork. The sliding panel system enables the works to be stacked and mounted to the wall in different arrangements, allowing the gallerist to maximize storage. Handcrafted metal jaalis with trelliswork render a quintessential Indian identity, and the design enables an event space that elegantly displays art.
DAG Delhi features a full wall-sized multimedia projection screen at the entrance façade, maximizing the interface between the gallery and visitors.