MAAT: Museu de Arte, Arquitetura e Tecnologia

Museum of Art, Architecture and Technology

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The newest attraction in Lisbon is the Museum of Art, Architecture and Technology, or MAAT for short, which opened in fall 2016. It is located in the Belém district directly on the banks of the Tagus River.

How was the MAAT created?

The museum was designed by the British architectural firm Amanda Levete Architects and is part of a process of beautification on the banks of the Tagus River. At the Cais de Sodré station, a promenade was created that invites people to stroll and the Doca de Santo Amoro complex was then renewed and transformed into a popular place to go out.

Part of the museum consists of the former thermal power plant, which was in operation from 1908 to 1970.

The construction of the museum was financed by the energy company EDP and its foundation. The idea is to combine the three areas of art, architecture and technology to get a multidisciplinary view of the present.

What is there to see here?

From the outside, the 12-meter-high building features a white wave-shaped facade as a reminder of the country’s history as a great seafaring nation. Modern light-colored tiles, some of which are three-dimensional, were also used as the exterior material to echo the tradition of Portuguese azulejos in the building. Depending on the incidence of light, the water of the river is reflected in them in a variety of ways.

The interior of the building also combines old and new, as one part is located in a former thermal power plant and one part in a new building. The power station part includes exhibits on science and features a permanent exhibit called the Power Station Circuit, which gives a glimpse into the history of the power station through its machinery. In the new part of the MAAT you can find over 200 works of contemporary art by both national and international artists.

The MAAT is interesting for all visitors of Lisbon who are interested in art, architecture and technology. Otherwise, the breathtaking view of the Tagus River, the Ponte de 25 Abril bridge and the Padrão dos Descobriments discovery monument should at least be enjoyed from the museum’s roof terrace.

Museum Information

Other museums in the area