ERA21 #05/2018 ERA 1918–2018

kniha motto

Let’s Build the State

Jan Antonín Baťa

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kniha completed project

A Symbiosis of Many Worlds Mixed-use Building DRN in Prague »

Stanislav Fiala / Fiala + Nemec

DNR is a new mixed-use building erected on the prominent corner of Národní and Mikulandská streets in the centre of Prague. There'd previously been a parking lot on the site, since 1966. It is adjoined by the baroque Schönkirch Palace. By combining the Palace with a new contemporary building, a mixed-use “palace” with a courtyard, shops, restaurants and offices was created. The intermingling of the baroque world with the modern, the old with the new; those are the main motifs that permeate the project and can be found in the main structural elements as well as small parts of the interior.

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Flags »

Michal Ureš

Five years ago, Kruh association announced an open competition for a new visual style of the Architecture Day festival. One of the proposals was a delicate photo of a ceiling corner that looked like a black-and-white Czech flag with the sign “Architecture Day”. It captured the client’s attention. Although it wasn’t selected, the proposal by Kryštof Doležal’s studio Breisky was later revisited by Kruh in connection with the anniversary of the foundation of Czechoslovakia, when the topic of the 8th Architecture Day was “Architecture Together”. The initial design was developed further by the photographer Michal Ureš, who focused on details of important buildings in search of an abstract detail reminiscent of the national flag. Imprecision or accidental encounters in the photographs are intentional.


Selected Chapters from the History of Czechoslovak Architecture 1918–2018

Vendula Hnídková (CZ), Peter Szalay (SK), redakce (CZ po roce 1992)

kniha interview

I’m an Anniversary Old Man. Karel Kroupa Interviewed by Rostislav Koryčánek »

In mid-june, the editorial office was contacted by architect Karel Kroupa. Born in 1918 in Broumov, he decided to celebrate his jubilee by recording his life’s story marked by the dramatic events of the 20th century. In the interview with Rostislav Koryčánek, he reveals his touching patriotism, describes his uneasy path to and love for architecture, as well as his professional career full of unexpected twists and unforgettable encounters.

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Prague Castle in the Years of Czechoslovakia »

Vendula Hnídková, Veronika Rollová

While the postwar development at the Prague Castle is not thoroughly explored, the era of interwar Czechoslovakia is strongly personified in the figures of president Tomáš Garrigue Masaryk and architect Josip Plečnik. This short article tries to link the alterations made at the castle throughout the existence of Czechoslovakia (including the short intermezzo of the Protectorate) in a basic timeline. It further attempts to illustrate the course of modern history and ideological priorities of the local political and cultural elites on the transformation of the seat of supreme state authorities.


The Redefinition of Prague Castle »

Elena Fialková

The development of Prague Castle has been a central theme of Czech history for over 1,000 years. Today it is the most visited destination of foreign visitors to the Czech Republic. In 2016, it also became a tourist attraction with the highest security measures in place. Reasons for this might include pressures of global terrorism, its attractiveness, or the very fact that it’s the current seat of the head of the state, who has the power to manage it according to his will. I therefore deal with the question of secure architecture, permeability, and the openness of the castle complex and its relationship to the city. With the present situation in mind, I discuss the functional use of Prague Castle as a symbol of democracy.


The Bratislava Castle Restoration. Between Altruism and Cynical Egoism »

Peter Szalay

“The client had the idea that it would be good to coat the staircase gold. You have to ask them where this idea came from.” This is how Ivan Masár, one of the two lead architects of the current restoration of the Bratislava Castle, replied to the criticism that the original white stucco in the preserved interiors was painted over with gold. The seemingly petty dispute is a reflection of the fact that even non-ideological liberal democracy and its institutions succumb to the temptation to manipulate history. The recent restoration is disturbingly similar to those efforts, in the hundred-plus years of the castle’s renovation, where ideology prevailed over preservation.

kniha interview

Architects Are Trained to Connect People. Matúš Vallo Interviewed by Peter Lényi »

Architect Matúš Vallo is well-known for his own studio but also because he initiated several projects dealing with public urban space; the most prominent being Urban Interventions. Two and a half years ago he assembled a team of professionals from various fields concerned with city management. Together the team wrote the book, Plan Bratislava. The analyses and proposals included in this book were used as a basis for Matúš Vallo’s current campaign to become the mayor of Bratislava.

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Golden Again. The Restoration and New Displays of the National Museum »

Karolína Vránková

The date is September 26, 2018 and the six-year-long restoration of the National Museum is finally being finished. The opening is in one month’s time. But for now, there are five hundred workmen on the construction site working twelve hours a day – electricians, girdlers, parquet layers, experts on artificial stone. One of the workmen is just finishing his job on the Pantheon dome, a good thirty meters above the bronze heads of the Czech greats. The celebration of the 100th anniversary of Czechoslovakia will take place right here. The president and the Prime Minister will attend… and most likely they will be delighted. The decorative neo-renaissance building by Josef Schulz is in all its glory again after 120 years. However, there is no distinctive new layer being added. “The proposition was that Schulz has built it so well that there is no need to add anything,” says Michal Lukeš, the Museum


Remodelling of the National Museum Surroundings »

IPR Praha

The restoration of the National Museum, which is being finished to commemorate the 100th anniversary of the foundation of Czechoslovakia and the 200th anniversary of the foundation of the Museum, also includes alterations to the surrounding public spaces. The aim is to rehabilitate their significance in terms of history, culture and transport. The area between the buildings of the National Museum and the former Federal Assembly is now pedestrianized with the possibility to accommodate a tram line in the future. The redesign should be the first step in the overall revitalization of the north-south motor road surroundings.

kniha vision

Czechia 2118 »

Stanislav Biler, Bohuslav Binka, Anna Beata Háblová, Filip Matějka, Jindřich Ráftl, Jan Tůma, Milota Sidorová, Janica Šipulová, Erik Tabery, Filip Tittl, Lukáš Tittl, Filip Landa

How will Czechia look in one hundred years? What opics will be shaping the conversation and what impact will they have on the built environment? How will we live, travel, work, communicate? And will we be here at all? We’ve asked selected professionals from the fields of architecture, urbanism, economics, transport, environmental studies, sociology, and journalism to share their visions of the future.

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Maxim Velčovský

A combination of a wire model from the virtual world of computers and a children's climbing frame. I am interested in connecting those two worlds. As a child I used to play on a playground with a globe-shaped climbing frame welded from metal tubes. The virtual model of the founder of Czechoslovakia, our first president, became a climbing frame for me. It is not a sacred, untouchable icon in the form of a memorial but a living object in the public space, you can enter and be part of it. You can sit on Masaryk's shoulder and whisper into his ear, play inside him, or have a picnic underneath him. You can romp around him and most importantly, you can think about him. I wanted the viewer to symbolically become a physical part of TGM's story because that is how it is in reality, too, but often we forget about it.


Curtain Walls: Glazed Façades

Roman Šnajdr


More than 55 Years of Self-compacting Concrete in the Czech Republic

Milada Mazurová

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