The MAS © Filip Dujardin
- Museum aan de Stroom
03 338 44 00
fax +32 3 338 44 44
Building and surrounding area
As well as being a museum, the MAS is a striking monument in Antwerp.
The MAS is of course first and foremost a museum, but it is also an extraordinary building in its own right, occupying an extraordinary site in an extraordinary location. So the building and its location also provide a very special MAS experience.
The MAS is an eye-catching building. Its design was inspired by a sixteenth-century storehouse or ‘Hanzehuis’. The galleries are stacked up like ‘boxes’ creating a spiral tower with large expanses of glass. As you go up on the escalators from the ground floor to +9, you have a constantly changing view of Antwerp: city, port and river in a single glance. The MAS was designed by architects Neutelings and Riedijk.
Indian red stone and curved expanses of glass
The architecture of the MAS is striking and all eyes are drawn to it. The outside consists of red stone from India and curved expanses of glass six metres high. The radiant red MAS tower is covered with 3,000 hands in aluminium which sparkle in the sunlight.
The MAS square
To walk across the square in front of the MAS is to literally walk on world art! On the Hanzestedenplaats you’ll find a work of art by Antwerp’s most famous living artist: a 1,600-m² mosaic entitled ‘Dead Skull’ by Luc Tuymans, his first public work to be permanently on display.
The artist based his mosaic on a painting of the same name he had produced in 2002, which was itself based on the commemorative plaque to Antwerp resident Quinten Metsys (1466-1529) which is attached to the outside of the Cathedral of Our Lady. Metsys was a painter and founder of the painters’ guild.
Luc Tuymans’ ‘Dead Skull’ gives Antwerp’s artistic history a contemporary twist. The 1,600-m² mosaic is his first permanent work on public display.