The Faculty of Arts of Masaryk University in Brno
Arne Nováka 1, Brno-centre
2010 – 2015
|Team:||Rastislav Balog (project supervisor), Pavel Dvořák, Kateřina Eiermannová, Petr Eliáš, Tomáš Machovský, Lenka Musilová, Petr Pelčák, Petr Uhrín (project supervisor), David Vahala|
|Art work:||Copies of the classical statues / sculptor Arnold Bartůněk,
Unrealized statue on the piazza / sculptor Arnold Bartůněk
|Awards:||2017 shortlisted for the Czech Architecture Award|
|2016 shortlisted for the Prize of the Club for Old Prague for a New Structure in a Historical Setting|
|Architectural Model:||Vladimír Jeník|
|Photographs of the model:||David Židlický|
A mixture of buildings, making up the grounds of the Faculty of Arts, came into being over the last one-hundred-fifty years. We had an interest in providing it with a theme wherein a genuine university environment, a university campus, would emerge. Its centre, a unifying and remarkable element, is the open space of the internal courtyard which was originally part of the garden of the city orphanage which the Faculty of Arts was moved into it at the time of its founding in the year 1920. We therefore designed its transformation from a utilitarian yard with its surface planted with gloomy fir trees into a university quad.
It continues to be divided for operational reasons into a paved part, a piazza with the new main entrance, and a park grounds. The boundary lines are articulated by terrain levelling. A stage therefore comes about which can be used for teaching outside (the Summer School of Slavonic Studies has been taking place here for several decades now) or as an actual stage facing out on the paved surface, ideal for various school events. It ends with a pool on the western side. The sound of the rushing water bouncing off the facades of the buildings enhances the atmosphere of the space. We placed a great emphasis on the on the character and utility of the outdoor spaces. The quad also becomes the centre of the campus as the newly designed entrance to the grounds leads into it. It no longer leads through one of the various buildings, but instead into the space between them, into the central point from which one enters each of the structures.
Two of the buildings are new and provide the campus with comprehensibility and a formal unity. These structures run alongside parallel with Arne Nováka street (from which one enters the grounds). One of these, completely remodelled, consists of the entrance for the entire group of buildings; the second, a new building, makes up its rear and serves to bring the group to a close both spatially and visually. Both have brick facades and the same set-up for the identical windows. They consequently form a new construction substance which defines and organizes the grounds and provides it with a unifying motif and character. The clarity and comprehensibility of its composition is supported by the cladding, consisting of classic articulation of the facades of both adjoining buildings which delimit the grounds into the geometry of Gorkého and Grohova streets.
The new building is on the site of a temporary structure from the year 1922 which was demolished. Its spatial core is a light-providing glazed ceiling and an open hall space cutting through all of the floors with a direct stairway in two scissor-like arranged flights. Classrooms are situated around them along the eastern and northern facades and offices for doctoral students and research workers are along the western side. An auditorium is situated on the ground floor and the library of the historical institute with the high open space of the reading room on the final floor of double the height.
The internal climate of the building is dealt with through the technology of a cooled concrete core and limitations to the number and size of glazed surfaces on the most sun-impacted western facade. Our work was motivated by a desire to make a university grounds out of a heterogeneous mix of structures as well as an interest in creating a certain space in the topography of the city. This has not been achieved as yet, however, as the university obtained less than half of the needed investment resources and consequently only half of the overall design has been realized.