Matthias A. Peterseim

This site shows things I do or think concerning the wide-ranging subject of architecture.

Forma Urbis Romae —
A New Fragment to Rome’s Urban Fabric, 2020

Short description:
Integration of a new key element in the fabric of the great archeologic park of the sites Roman Forum, Palatine Hill, Imperial Fora and Colosseum (Parco Archeologico del Colosseo). Based on the majestic marble map "Forma Urbis Romae" (13x18m), on which during Septimius Severus reign (around 203 a.D.) the complete ground floor plan of the ancient city was incised, the new Museo della Forma Urbis addresses the urban history from antiquity to our time. It grants visitors an overview of the complex fabric of different epochs that blend together in the Roman cityscape. The already intense, sensory experience of Rome is therefore extended by spacial and historic knowledge which can lead to a deeper, profound understanding while experiencing the artifacts of the "eternal city".
In this project, the marble map Forma Urbis is reconstructed according to the preserved fragments and further archaeological data at its original place at the Foro della Pace, which now lies under  the Via dei Fori Imperiali next to the Basilica of Maxentius and the convent SS. Cosma e Damiano. A public Loggia on the opposite side of the map integrates this important historical document into the urban landscape. It recalls the many public buildings that characterise Roman urban spaces. A new square (piazza) spans between the Museum, the Loggia, the Basilica of Maxentius, the map and the convent SS. Cosma e Damiano. It is slightly elevated and reinterprets roman urban morphologies.
The museum consists of a closed core and a circulating covered walkway, that integrates the cityscape like an exhibit allowing visitors to seamlessly compare the inner exhibition contents with the actual urban fabric. Along this walkway, various halls with differentiated media and therefore lighting conditions contrast like pauses in the overall upward movement of the visit: From dark halls, like the cinema and a VR-space, to a skylit hall with analog media up to the roof garden, which exhibits antique marble originals under Roman daylight. The Museo della Forma Urbis might act as a starting point of an extensive tour around the archeological sites or may be visited on the way between Roman Forum and the Imperial Fora. Architecturally, the plastically articulated bodies of the ensemble mediate between contemporary spacial gestures and the classic surrounding of the monumental, historically meaningful site.

Master’s Thesis at Technical University Munich
Chair for Architectural Design and Conception
Prof. Uta Graff