The Philippines's new Mind Museum looks downright alien amid Taguig's industrial skyscrapers. Lead architect Ed Calma wouldn't have it any other way—he knows that in an Internet age, a museum's draw has to begin before you enter the gallery. Here's how, like the exhibits inside, Calma fused science and art to create something beautiful. The museum opens December 15.
A grass roof provides insulation against the scorching sun for the classrooms and offices housed below. The rest of the structure's aluminum facade effectively reflects the sun's rays.
Calma's team studied and took advantage of shade created by adjacent buildings. A glass facade was built on the shaded northeast side, and a curved external wall shields waiting visitors on the sun-soaked side.
The aerodynamic roof allows for efficient rain collection and prevents wind tunneling by diverting gusts upward. Its fluid shape echoes "a stone that's been weathered by the forces and becomes smooth," Calma says.
A neighboring 8,600-square-foot park offers visitors the chance to learn about sun, wind, water, and plants while interacting with exhibits designed by landscape architects and artists.
A version of this article appeared in the December 2011/January 2012 issue of Fast Company magazine.