The new cultural centre in Kraków and scientific research hub have come out on top in their respective categories by the world's top architecture website...
Upon the announcement of the results, the Archdaily jury stated, "This group of buildings is unique in several aspects, from their spatial qualities to their structures, but also in terms of what they represent for society and their impact on local communities".
The 4,300-square-metre building in Kraków, designed by Ingarden & Ewý Architects in collaboration with Jacek Ewý and in cooperation with K3 Architekci, brings together two cultural institutions, the Juliusz Słowacki Theatre and the Malopolska Voivodeship Library. It stands on Karmelicka Street, a central city street, and has also been nominated for the prestigious Mies van der Rohe Award this year.
The layout features art and multimedia collections as well as the theatre and events facilities. The building is equipped with retractable stages and state-of-the-art technology to make smooth transitions between all the centre's functions. The building design is based on the idea of a "cultural garden", and merges with the surrounding gardens. It won the title in the category of Cultural projects.
As Archdaily notes on its website,
The building of MGA introduced new spatial order to the old backyards and ruined buildings in Rajska and Szujskiego Streets in Kraków. The starting point was a multifunctional hall, which was entered into the outline of the old, 19th-century horse-riding arena, used in the last years of its history as workshops and storage space for the Juliusz Słowacki Theatre in Kraków.
The University of Silesia in Katowice's Scientific Information Centre and Academic Library (Polish acronym: CINiBA is the Polish acronym) has also been nominated for the award in 2013, and is part of the university's broad redevelopment plan. The innovative 3-storey centre, topped by a one-storey cube on top, provides functional space with a capacity of 1,000 people and a collection of some 1.8 million volumes, and was designed by the HS99 design team in Katowice. It won the title in the category of "Museums and Libraries".
As Archdaily assesses the building on its website,
The facades, clad in a repetitious fabric of rich kahan red sandstone, relate to the raw clay bricks on the neighbouring buildings without the connotation of scale inherent to a singular brick element. The exterior treatment abstracts the building’s function of organized book storing while introducing a notion of mystery inseparably connected to books.
The first selection round ended on the 29th of January, whittling down the initial list of 2,700 buildings down to several hundred, with the shortlist nominees announced the following day. Another nominee in the first round of voting was the extension project for the Polish Theatre in Poznań, nominated in the category of culture. The "paint studio" (Malarnia) of the historic building was opened in the 1980s, with renovations launched in 2011. The stage, auditorium, foyer and technical facilities have been rebuilt to the design of ARPA's George Gurawski and Trabendo. The jury recognised the interactive character of the redesigned Malarnia, which incorporates glass and opaque structures along with a suspended platform to create a modern, multidimensional space.
Finalists in all 14 categories were announced on the website on the 14th of February, based on the 70,000 votes submitted from Archdaily users. Archdaily is the most frequently visited website for the architecture industry, providing fresh information for architects around the world, and presenting the editorial work of influential international architectural studios, and innovative studios that are less broadly known.
For more information on the competition and voting, see: www.archdaily.com/building-of-the-year/2012
For more information on the Malopolska Garden of Arts on Archdaily, see: www.archdaily.com/288978/malopolska-garden-of-arts-ingarden-ewy-architects
For more information on the CINiBA, see: www.archdaily.com/284180/ciniba-hs99
For more information on the Malarnia at the Polish Theatre on Archdaily, see: www.archdaily.com/220070/extension-of-the-polski-theater-trabendo-arpa
Editor: Agnieszka Le Nart
Thumbnail credit: Małopolska Garden of Arts / Ingarden & Ewý Architects © Krzysztof Ingarden, source: archdaily.com