Jean-Marie Tjibaou Cultural Centre

Updated: May 13, 2019

In Noumea, the capital of Ne Caladonia, architect Renzo Piano designed the cultural centre that celebrates the traditional vernacular Kanak culture amidst much political controversy over the independent status sought by some Kanaks from French rule. 


Northeast of the historic center of Nouméa, the capital of New Caladonia, the Cultural Centre designed by our favorite Italian architect Renzo Piano, celebrates the traditional vernacular Kanak culture amidst much political controversy over the independent status sought by some Kanaks from French rule. 





The Jean-Marie Tjibaou Cultural Centre is a combination of modern architecture and the indigenous culture of New Caledonia. Northeast of the historic center of Nouméa, the capital of New Caladonia, the Cultural Centre designed by our favorite Italian architect Renzo Piano, celebrates the traditional vernacular Kanak culture amidst much political controversy over the independent status sought by some Kanaks from French rule. 


Already made in 1998


The Cultural Centre opened in June 1998 and was named after Jean-Marie Tjibaou, the leader of the independence movement who was assassinated in 1989 and had had a vision of establishing a cultural center which blended the linguistic and artistic heritage of the Kanak people.


The Kanak building traditions and the resources of modern international architecture were blended by Piano. The formal curved axial layout, 250 metres (820 ft) long on the top of the ridge, contains ten large conical cases or pavilions (all of different dimensions) patterned on the traditional Kanak Grand Hut design. The building is surrounded by landscaping, which is also inspired by traditional Kanak design elements.