The Schloss Neuhaus an der Donau, built in the 12th century, is located in upper Austria perched atop a rocky promontory overlooking the Danube River 220 meters below. In the 13th and 17th centuries new structures were added to the original Schloss or Castle. Otto Plappart, the owner of the Castle decided that now was the moment to create an additional building: The Klaus Rinke Museum. He asked Rinke to recommend an architect. Rinke approached his friend and acclaimed architect Jean Nouvel, with whom he had previously collaborated, to design the museum.
To accommodate Rinke’s art works, from massive metal sculptures to small graphite drawings, Nouvel has designed several separate spaces, incorporating the existing construction from the multi-storied 12th century building in his design. One of Nouvel’s constructions will mimic the Castle’s 17th century, 5-sided bell tower. In the courtyard, a new wooden tower with an elevator and stairs will serve as access point to the multi-leveled galleries in the 12th century structure. A long exposition space, fabricated in wood and anchored on the side of the mountain, with a panoramic view of the Danube, will be consecrated to Rinke’s massive graphite works. An all-glass construction will house one of Rinke’s major monumental sculptures. As well a funicular will be established to transport travelers from the Danube up the mountain to the museum.For his choice of building materials, Nouvel has decided to highlight the natural elements of the surrounding environment, favoring elements such as wood from the nearby forests and granite from the local queries.