IK Lab is an eco-conscious gallery located in the luxurious ecological Azulik resort in Tulum, a popular vacation town on the coast of Mexico’s Yucatán Peninsula. The museum itself was created by Santiago Rumney Guggenheim, great-grandson of the famous American art dealer Peggy Guggenheim. It is considered to be an innovative art and cultural space that should inspire visitors as well as artists of all kinds.
The main idea behind this building was to show how architecture can be combined with nature. Big focus was put on sustainability. The main materials that were used in construction were cement and local organic Bejuco wood, which creates a flowy pattern, alternating with segments of cement that look like waves.
The entire gallery is elevated above ground, resembling a giant tree-house. This was done to ensure that the local wildlife is not disrupted in any way. In addition to this, no trees were cut to in the process of construction.
The roof is made out of branches that let natural light come through and illuminate the entire space, creating a forest-like atmosphere. More light floods in through circular windows of varying shapes and sizes, which puncture the walls. There is also a raised walkway that leads around the gallery. These natural materials give a fresh and unique look to the structure.
Visitors must take off their shoes before stepping in, since connecting with nature is a huge part of the entire experience. They are invited to wander around and interact with the architecture and walk barefoot on the curvy floor, minding their every step.
The gallery is dedicated to exploring new ways of experiencing and creating art. It has hosted many exhibitions of some of the world’s finest visual artists, as well as multiple art programs for local children, and a multidisciplinary residency for aspiring artists, fashion designers, chefs, musicians, etc.