The Brandhorst Museum is full of the latest technological refinements which, although not seen by the visitor, are indispensable for running the museum. The sensitive works of art have to be protected against changes in ambient conditions, dust and mechanical damage or theft – to mention just some criteria. Ambient temperature, air purity, light protection and security are all part of one overall concept that is both sustainable and ecological. The considerable experience gained over many years by the Doerner Institute (www.doernerinstitut.de), which provided advice during the construction period on structural questions, and the close cooperation between the building authorities, the architects and the planners, made a decisive contribution towards optimising the technological requirements of the exhibitions spaces in this revolutionary museum building.
Unlike conventional museum buildings with air conditioning, the Brandhorst Museum uses the wall and floor surfaces to regulate the ambient temperature. These can be gently warmed up or cooled down by means of thermo-active building components.
The exchange of air, essential if only for reasons of hygiene, is given over to a ventilation system: purified air slowly expands into the gallery spaces via ventilation grids along the walls. Filtering the air before it is introduced into the galleries prevents omnipresent air pollutants in the form of gases and particles from coming into contact with the sensitive surfaces of artworks. In addition, the fresh air ventilation system regulates the relative humidity, keeping it at a constant level – essential for the preservation of the valuable exhibits.
A further important element is the lighting concept: The Museum Brandhorst has placed great emphasis on natural as opposed to artificial light. Light ceilings covered with a stretched transparent fabric shape the optical appearance of the ground floor and the galleries on the upper level. This ceiling construction, clearly visible from below, provides an evenly distributed, diffuse natural light without any direct sunlight, together with artificial lighting concealed behind the skin of the ceiling. Intelligent light control elements ensure the correct illumination and prevent too much damaging light reaching the exhibits.
The works of art are protected by a multi-staged security concept that ranges from how the exhibits are fixed to the wall, to a comprehensive CCTV surveillance system.