The area in which the GES-2 museum is located is part of an extremely vibrant district known today as Red October. This area is home to a chocolate factory turned innovation center for start-ups, cafes and restaurants, the Strelka Institute, an urban laboratory offering an educational and research program, and the Udarnik Theater, an important example of Russian architecture.
The synergies between these buildings and the V-A-C Foundation help strengthen the cultural and multigenerational character of this part of the island, making it a popular destination for both Muscovites, Russians and tourists from abroad.
Arch. Renzo Piano's design transforms this building into a space conceived as an articulated experience ranging from visual and performing arts to a free civic space for people.
Inside the building 20,000 m² of spaces and functions are organized into four main hubs:
- the civic hub, a combination of open-access spaces and activities open to the outdoor plaza to capture and engage street life;
- the inner plaza, barycentric to the building, the entrance to the V-A-C experience to which are connected the library and media center to the north, free art installation spaces to the south, and the restaurant;
- the reception hub, on the ground floor in the center of the main building, which contains multiple informal activities such as ticket office, info point, orientation, and store;
- spaces for shows and performances on the upper floor, overlooking the birch forest created outside.
The exhibition hub is a combination of spaces of different sizes and heights, offering a variety of spatial conditions to accommodate any kind of artwork. The educational hub offers a look at exhibitions and includes the School of Art, dedicated to training a new generation of curators, critics and art historians, and Lifelong Learning, with classrooms and workshops geared toward the general public. Also part of this hub are several artist residencies with workshops located in the north tower.