Over 1,000 architecture design studio projects are developed during every term as part of the Architecture and Building Engineering program (during the Bachelor’s and Master’s degree studies), i.e. we have over 2,000 projects every year.
The AbStrakt is a catalogue that brings together a careful selection of the best student works for the past academic years, including comments on the teaching methods and presentation of the works. It contains a list of exhibitions, workshops, competitions, educational excursions, internships, conferences and off-program lectures by experts with outstanding practical experience, including brief descriptions.
On the initiative of Josef Christiann Willenberg and based on the Charter (rescript) written in Czech and signed by the Emperor Joseph I on January 18, 1707, the first public engineering school in Central Europe was founded under the name “Professional Engineering School” in Prague, which has been gradually transformed into the Czech Technical University as it is known today. Among the first taught subjects was the professional knowledge of fortification, i.e. military construction engineering. As early as under the guidance of the second professor J.F. Schor, an artist – painter and architect – theoretic, the Professional Engineering School developed into a civil engineering school. Thus, civil engineering became one of the first subjects taught at the School, and therefore the teaching of civil engineering is rightfully dated back to the very beginning of the University in 1707.
Today’s Faculty of Civil Engineering was established in 1960 by the merger of the Faculty of Architecture and Building Construction, Faculty of Civil Engineering and Faculty of Land Surveying, and by adding the construction-oriented program from the dissolved Faculty of Economic Engineering. The Faculty of Architecture (which marks 40 years since its foundation this year) broke away in 1976.
During 1991, an opinion has once again prevailed that a strict boundary between Architecture and Building Engineering is not correct, and therefore architecture courses began to be reintroduced at the Faculty of Civil Engineering. The Department of the Fundamentals of Architecture(soon renamed the Department of Architecture) was established and began to run courses in architecture – initially based on the teaching module Architecture of Buildings as part of the Civil Engineering studies (1991-1993) and followed by an autonomous engineering program in Building Construction and Architecture (1993- 2010). All efforts to reintroduce courses in architecture and education of architects were topped off by the implementation of a structured program called Architecture and Building Engineering (since 2003),graduates from which are granted “Ing. arch.” degree (since 2009) and are recognized as fully qualified architects by the Czech Chamber of Architects (since 2013).
The Department of Architecture at the CTU Faculty of Civil Engineering in Prague celebrates 25 years of existence in 2016. The start date was February 1st, 1991. The teacher recruitment notification for the new department no. 129 at the Faculty of Civil Engineering was issued in November 1990. A competition for the post of the first Head of Department that was called “Fundamentals of Architecture” at that time was opened at the same time. The successful applicant was Ing.arch. Boris Rákosník. Other participants in the competition were prof. Ing. arch. Jaroslav Sýkora, DrSc. and associate professor Bedřich Košatka, CSc. The Department was chaired by 5 heads in a quarter of century: Ing. arch Boris Rákosník (1991), prof. Ing. arch. Svatopluk Voděra, CSc. (1992 – January 2001), doc. Ing. arch. Václav Dvořák (2001 – 2015), prof. Ing. arch. Petr Urlich (March – September 2015, delegated head) and prof. akad. Arch. Mikuláš Hulec since October 2015. The duties of the Deputy Head of the Department were assigned to Ing. arch. Jitka Paroubková (2001 – 2006), Ph.D., prof. Ing. arch. Tomáš Šenberger (2006 – 2012), doc. Ing. arch. Luboš Knytl (2012) doc. Ing. arch. Ing. Petr Šikola, Ph.D. (since 2013), doc. Ing. arch. Ing. Zuzana Pešková, Ph.D. (since 2015), Ing. arch. Ing. Jana Hořická, Ph.D. (since 2015), Ing. arch. Jaroslav Daďa (since 2015). Assistants of the Department were Ing. arch. Jitka Paroubková, Ph.D. (2006 – 2012) and Ing. arch. Ing. Jana Hořická, Ph.D. (since 2012). The Department had 106 permanent staff members (most of them had worked as visiting lecturers before being employed within the Faculty) and approximately the same number of outside collaborators. From 9 people who gathered at the foundation meeting of the Department, the staff expanded to 70 members.
In 1991 – 1993, the Department offered architecture courses based on the professional module “Architecture in Building Construction”, which was part of the field of study “Building Construction” and prepared accreditation for a new field of study called “Building Construction and Architecture”. Since 1993, the Department has been a guarantor of professional courses in a six-year Master’s degree program “Building Construction and Architecture” and has contributed to the education of graduates with extensive architectural knowledge. At the beginning of the Millennium, the Department of Architecture participated in the accreditation of a new structured study program “Architecture and Building Engineering” (A+BE, a four-year Bachelor‘s degree program and a two-year Master‘s degree program), in which it guarantees a full scope of architectural studies. The Department of Architecture does not guarantee any courses belonging to other programs of study any more, and therefore the Architecture and Building Engineering program and the Department of Architecture are often equated. The courses focused on Architecture and Building Engineering at the Department of Architecture represent 43 percent in the Bachelor’s degree program (of which 61 percent are design studio projects and 39 percent are theoretical architectural subjects) and 78 percent in the Master’s degree program (of which 71 percent are design studio projects and 29 percent are theoretical architectural subjects). The Department of Architecture and the teaching of architecture are closely linked to each other, one depends on the other.
The Department has gradually expanded its staff from 9 people who gathered at the foundation meeting to 70 employees. It had 106 internal staff members and about the same number of external collaborators. The Department provided professional education to 735 graduates from the Building Construction and Architecture program (“Ing.” degree) as well as to 2,003 graduates from the Bachelor’s degree program in Architecture and Building Engineering (“Bc.” degree) and to 1,096 graduates from the Master’s degree program in Architecture and Building Engineering (“Ing. arch.” degree).
Architecture and Building Engineering Programme
The academic year 2013–2014 was a preparation year for the extension of accreditation of the A+BE Bachelor’s and Master’s degree programs of study, including an in-depth audit and substantial changes in the programs towards modern education of architects. The proposal for re-accreditation was submitted to the Academic Senate of the Faculty of Civil Engineering, which recommended it to the Scientific Board of the Faculty for approval at its October meeting. The accreditation of the programs of study was extended until June 2018 and another extension until 2019 was granted upon the amendment of the Universities Act. In February 2015, the Pedagogical Council of the A+BE program held talks on a new plan of study within the Bachelor’s degree and Master’s degree programs, which was approved at its March session. The start date for the new plans of study was the academic year 2015/16.
The conferences organized by the Department of Architecture are mainly tied up with the PhD’s degree program in Architecture and Building Engineering, but they are also open to students of the Bachelor’s degree and Master’s degree programs. Two conferences were organized in the academic years 2014/15 and 2015/16: Architecture and Sustainable Development in 2014 and Rural Area and Regional Planning in 2015, Architecture and Building Engineering in 2016 and 2nd Membrane Conference in 2016.
Summer School of Architecture
The Department of Architecture together with Omnium Society organized the first Summer School of Architecture and Building Engineering under the name Atelier D: Summer Architecture Etude in the Spirit of Charles IV. The year 2016 is full of notable events to mark 700 years since the birth of Charles IV, King of Bohemia and Holy Roman Emperor, and therefore the summer school could not leave such motif aside. The title “Atelier D: Summer Architecture Etude in the Spirit of Charles IV” suggests that the central theme of “Vita Caroli” brought the component parts together in one principal thematic link. Charles IV was above all a visionary, a pioneer of modern technologies and modern conception of the world, a timeless personality … and that is what was highlighted as his lasting legacy during the event. The Summer School was open to all, regardless of profession, specialty or age, who wished to learn more about the Architecture and Building Engineering beyond the scope of normal educational practice. It was a combination of a seminar and a follow-up workshop. Altogether 21 participants attended at the Summer School courses (high school students, college students, educators, designers, specialists in monumental care and heritage preservation, officers of local and national authorities and enthusiasts). The agenda was divided into five working days in the period from 29. 8. to 2. 9.2016, combining the presentation of theoretical knowledge and a creative workshop. The attendance at the workshop was not mandatory for all participants, intended only for those interested in.
The achievements of the students of or graduates from the Architecture and Building Engineering program in architecture competitions can be divided into those gained in the competitions that are held openly for students of or graduates from different Architecture and Building Engineering schools, and those gained internally in limited competitions for the A+BE students or for the students at the CTU Faculty of Civil Engineering. The first category is represented by competitions such as Young Architecture Award, Le Défi, Superstudio, Isover Multi – Comfort House Students Contest, Timber Structure of the Year and Student’s Scientific and Research Work that are repeatedly opened and popular with students, together with one-time or specialpurpose competitions such as Work&Chill, Běchovice Old School, Chýně New School, etc. Internal awards include Yellow Cards since January 2005 as well as best diploma project awards granted at the Faculty of Civil Engineering since June 2016. The Professor Voděra Prizeis granted in the category of Architecture and Building Engineering.
The outcomes of design studio projects include posters and models, and therefore it is quite natural that exhibitions represent the largest part of the presentation activities organized by the Department of Architecture and closely associated with the Architecture and Building Engineering program. Similarly, architectural drafting outputs, namely the sketches created by students are another suitable exhibition material.
The two main groups of exhibition items represent a major percentage of the total number of exhibitions organized within the A+BE program. A minor percentage is reported for exhibitions linked to the outputs of student competitions, for which the enlisted – and thus also exhibited – architectural designs had not always been produced as part of design studio work (exhibition of the designs shortlisted for the national round of the student competition “Multi Comfort House Isover”) or as part of workshops (exhibition of the designs from the Reading Room workshop), or to the outputs from the types of subjects other than design studio work or drafting (exhibition of subject-related end-of-term works for foreign students called Composition and Theory of Architecture). A completely unique exhibition presented professional experience that the students gained during their short-term internships abroad, which were given support from the OPPA Innovation of the Architecture and Building Engineering Study Program. The organization of exhibitions is the domain of the Department of Architecture and its pedagogical staff who closely cooperate with the Prague districts (in particular districts no. 5, 6, 7 and 10) and other municipalities (Mníšek pod Brdy, Votice and Lužná, etc.). Since 2016, active students have been getting ahead as initiators and organizers of thematic exhibitions. An illustrative example of such events can be the aforementioned Reading Room workshop with exhibition of designs, which was organized fully independently by the AS+ Society (Petr Šťovíček, Josef Zach, Martin Horešovský) or another exhibition and discussion devoted to the future of the Vltava River Embankment at Smíchov, initiated and performed by our students Martin Hlusička and Nikoleta Slováková. Although such activities are mainly organized by students, they are guaranteed by teachers of the Department of Architecture.
Another criterion for the classification of exhibitions can be the placing of exhibited items on or outside of the premises of the Faculty of Civil Engineering in Prague-Dejvice. In fact, all design studio projects and sketches created by our students are always exhibited on the Faculty premises, and selected works are then exhibited outside of the school. An exceptional position among the exhibitions held on the Faculty premises has a permanent and continually varied exhibition of design studio projects, which were granted an internal Yellow Card award. The projects are installed on the gallery of Design studio D. Responsibility for the exhibition lies with Ing. arch. Petra Novotná and Ing. arch. Ladislav Kalivoda, CSc. Analogous event is a permanent exhibition of the models inside the connecting neck between Design studio D and Building B on the Faculty premises. The person in charge of the models is Ing. Michal Chalupa.
When comparing the number of exhibitions over the past years, there is an obvious decrease in the number of exhibitions focused on design studio projects at the Faculty of Civil Engineering. This is because of reducing the number of design studio-work submission deadlines to only three per term in order to keep the examination period as much untouched as possible. This measure was first adopted for the academic year 2015/16 so that the lowest years of the Bachelor’s degree program deliver their projects as the first ones, followed by the higher years of the Bachelor’s degree program and the students of the Master’s degree program. On the contrary, a slightly increasing tendency can be observed on exhibitions held outside of the Facultypremises, which is a very important factor for the promotion and popularization of the A+BE program of study and related activities of the Department of Architecture.
Among the performed exhibitions, the most comprehensive exhibition in terms of presentation of the design studio projects tutored by the Department of Architecture is the exhibition “Students of the Architecture and Building Engineering Program at the Faculty of Civil Engineering and Their Guests”, which has been held since 1998 (at its very beginning, the exhibition was known under the name “Students of the Building Engineering and Architecture Program and Their Guests”) and which has been prepared with the long-term participation of Ing. Klára Kroftová, Ph.D. Guests in its 16th year were students from the Department of Urban and Regional Planning of CTU Faculty of Civil Engineering in Prague and students from the CTU Faculty of Architecture in Prague. The 17th year was visited by students from the Department of Urban and Regional Planning of CTU Faculty of Civil Engineering in Prague and students from the Erasmus Plus program in partnership with the University of Hunan, School of Architecture in China. Another exhibition devoted to the collaboration between Czech and Chinese students of architecture was held separately.
Considering the number of visitors who could see the exhibited projects, a completely unique event was the outdoor exhibition that was held on the racecourse in Pardubice during the 124th Velká pardubická cross-country steeplechase. The principal theme of the exhibition was the riding hall in Pardubice. The Department of Architecture participated in the European Habitat conference with the exhibition “The Art of Living through the Eyes of the Students of the Department of Architecture”, which presented projects of the students of Architecture and Building Engineering focused not only on residential buildings but also on a vision for the City of Prague.
The other exhibitions were held mainly in partnership with municipal councils, within which the municipality came up with the proposals for topic ideas for a variety of design studio projects, which the students completed as part of their program of study and presented publicly to the “client”. An interesting and unique experiment was a single topic idea submitted by the Town Hall of Prague 10 for all the third year students of the Bachelor’s degree program in the summer term 2014/15.