Museum Architecture and Museography - 2nd semester


The curricular unit of Museum Architecture and Museography is related to the scientific areas of Museum Studies and Heritage and aims to provide a global perspective of the themes associated with the design, construction and use of museological spaces, from the building/container to the exhibition contents.
It seeks to analyse and discuss museum architecture and museography in their multiple aspects, namely: historical evolution; associated socio-cultural dynamics; urban intervention; renovation of architectural heritage; programme and technical or functional requirements; relation between building and exhibition contents; multidisciplinarity; planning, research and communication.
It is thus intended that students acquire fundamental skills to interpret and discuss projects for museum buildings and temporary exhibitions, while at the same time acquiring essential knowledge to develop a professional practice in the field of museography.

General characterization





Responsible teacher

Helena Barranha (IST/UL)


Weekly - 3 letivas + 1 tutorial

Total - Available soon

Teaching language





ALTSHULER, B., Salon to Biennial - Exhibitions that Made Art History: 1863-1959. London: Phaidon, 2008; Biennials and Beyond: Exhibitions that Made Art History: 1962-2002 (Salon to Biennial). London: Phaidon, 2013.
BARRANHA, H.; MARTINS, S. S.; RIBEIRO, A. P. (eds.) - Museus sem lugar: ensaios, manifestos e diálogos em rede. Lisboa: Instituto de História da Arte, FCSH - Universidade Nova de Lisboa, 2015.
BISHOP, C. - Radical Museology. London: Koenig Books, 2014.
JIMÉNEZ-BLANCO, M. D., Una historia del museo en nueve conceptos. Madrid: Ediciones Cátedra, 2014.
LAMPUGNANI, V. M. e A. SACHS, Museums for a New Millenium. Munique: Prestel, 1999.
MACLEOD, S., HANKS, L., and HALE, J. (eds.), Museum Making: Narratives, Architectures, Exhibitions. London: Routledge, 2012.
NAREDI-RAINER, P. von, Museum Buildings – a design manual. Berlin: Birkhäuser, 2004.
PEVSNER, N., A History of Building Types. New Jersey: Princeton University Press, 1976.

Teaching method

Based on a method of theoretical and practical teaching, the syllabus of this course is presented in lecures which, in certain topics, benefit from the contribution of invited experts, always appealling to the students´ participation. Fundamental bibliographical references constitute the support for the analysis of case studies, promoting, whenever possible, the confrontation between the international context and Portuguese examples.
In order to complement the theoretical sessions and bibliographical research, the course will include study visits to museums and temporary exhibitions.

Evaluation method

Evaluation method - the final mark will result from the following parameters:
▪ Attendance and participation in classes and study visits (20%)
▪ Individual work - article on Museum Architecture (40%)
▪ Group work - analysis of an exhibition or organisation of a study visit to an exhibition (40%)

Subject matter

01. Introduction: museum architecture and museography in contemporary culture
02. Museum architecture and museography - a brief historical perspective
03. Plan, programme and project - previous conditions and functional characterization
04. Museums and exhibitions as interventions in architectural heritage
05. Museography and exhibitions: research, programme, design and communication
06. Dialogues between art and architecture
07. Museums, exhibitions and digital cultures


Programs where the course is taught: