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Building a Museum for a Fashion Icon

FRENCH contractor Bouygues have released a video documenting the construction of a museum dedicated to fashion designer Yves Saint-Laurent in Marrakesh, Morocco. 

Having opened to public in the autumn of 2017, the 4,000 square metre museum displays original garments, sketches and photographs by the renowned couturier, and features a research library, 150-seat auditorium and a clothing archive.

Above: The Yves Saint-Laurent Museum in Marrakesh celebrates the work of the famed French designer (image courtesy of Studio KO).

Marrakesh was a highly-favoured destination for the French designer; he spent much of his free time there and the city was the inspiration behind much of his work.

Above: The new museum includes displays, as well as an auditorium and a research library containing over 6,000 volumes (image courtesy of Studio KO).

Combining local materials and the craftsmanship of Bouygues' Moroccan subsidiary Bymaro, the building is a testament to the precision and traditional skills of the construction workers - but there is less rustic side to the project too.

Above and below: The building's exterior was created by local workers to reflect the designer's dedication to craft and the impact of Moroccan culture on his work (images courtesy of Bouygues Construction). 

With a hot climate, bright African sunlight and fluctuating humidity, the museum had to include substantial HVAC plant systems in order to create and maintain the ideal conditions for storing fragile textile exhibits and sketches.

Above: State-of-the-art HVAC systems were required to create the optimal climatic conditions for the fragile exhibits (image courtesy of Bouygues Construction). 

The building also includes a number of sustainability features, such as insulated cavity walls, double glazing and rainwater recovery systems.

Construction was overseen by Pierre Bergé, Saint-Laurent's business partner, who died one month before the museum opened in 2017.


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