The Imperial War Museum, North, designed by Berlin-based architect Daniel Libeskind. Born in Łódź, Poland, in 1946, Libeskind's family had suffered during the Second World War and dozens of his relatives were murdered in the Holocaust. It was his first building in the United Kingdom.[
At the museum's opening, Libeskind said that he sought to "create a building ... which emotionally moved the soul of the visitor toward a sometimes unexpected realization". Libeskind envisaged a 'constellation composed of three interlocking shards' with each shard being a remnant of an imagined globe shattered by conflict. These shards in turn represented air, earth and water, and each formed a functionally distinct part of the museum. The 55 m high air shard, provides the museum's entranceway and a viewing balcony with views of the Manchester skyline. The earth shard houses the museum's exhibition spaces, while the water shard accommodates a cafe with views of the canal.
Imperial War Museum North is a museum in the Metropolitan Borough of Trafford in Greater Manchester, England. One of five branches of the Imperial War Museum, it explores the impact of modern conflicts on people and society. It is the first branch of the Imperial War Museum to be located in the north of England. The museum occupies a site overlooking the Manchester Ship Canal on Trafford Wharf Road, Trafford Park, an area which during the Second World War was a key industrial centre and consequently heavily bombed during the Manchester Blitz in 1940.
The museum building opened in July 2002, receiving 470,000 visitors in its first year of opening. It was recognised with awards or prize nominations for its architecture and is a prime example of Deconstructivist architecture. The museum features a permanent exhibition of chronological and thematic displays, supported by hourly audiovisual presentations which are projected throughout the gallery space. The museum also hosts a programme of temporary exhibitions in a separate gallery.