Book Museum

An exhibit with the book at it's centre – both as a material object and as a social and spiritual phenomenon that has changed and is still changing society at large as well as individual lives and minds.

GAISS-arhitekti-Book-Museum (02) Photo Krists Luhaers-web

A book is an object designed to be understood by exploring and reading it. An exhibition of historic artefacts allows to display only one spread, therefore additional means of communicating each book's unique value have to be investigated.

GAISS-arhitekti-Book-Museum (06) Photo Krists Luhaers-web
GAISS-arhitekti-Book-Museum (12) Photo Davis Dorss-web
GAISS-arhitekti-Book-Museum (17)-crop

There are two basic principles for organizing exhibits - chronologic and thematic.

The curatorial concept provided that both of these principles should be implemented for the exhibit, thus creating a combined experience. Our task was to give the spatial expression to this idea.

GAISS-arhitekti-Book-Museum (18)-crop
GAISS-arhitekti-Book-Museum (01) Photo Maris Lapins-web
GAISS-arhitekti-Book-Museum (03) Photo Maris Lapins-web

Each of the thematical parts is characterized by the use of different structure, material, light and typography.

Interactive elements challenge the visitor to discover the book's potential to engage with the viewer through all the senses - sight, touch, hearing, smell, taste.

By flipping the pages of a "live" book the visitor is travelling through the worlds of famous novels in an immersive installation illustrating the book's power to instantly transport the reader to parallel universes.


Floor plan

GAISS-arhitekti-Book-Museum (09) Photo Davis Dorss-web

Project data

Type: Exhibition architecture
Location: Riga, Latvia
Client: National Library of Latvia
Architect: GAISS
Team: Kārlis Melzobs, Arnita Melzoba, Agnese Mālniece
Graphic design: Associates, Partners & Sons
Floor surface: 234 m²
Timeline: 2015 - 2016
Status: Built
Photography: Māris Lapiņš, Krists Luhaers, Dāvis Doršs
Awards: Latvian Architecture Award 2017, National Design Award of Latvia 2017 finalist
Visiting info:

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