[THEME] Prague is a city with many myths and innumerable legends but it is also a place with a strong historical cultural ferment. The Jewish quarter represents the soul of the city, for many centuries it has been the place where the persecuted people took refuge. The Astronomical Clock in the Old Town and the Dancing House along the banks of the Vltava River are some of the most recognized symbols of the Czech capital which sees the Mala Strana district, a narrow alley that leads to the Castle and San Vito Cathedral, one of the oldest districts of the city. In a district of many stratifications where the first Jewish persecutions started during the XIV century, we want to imagine the new Ebraic Museum of Prague, a place of memory that might became a contemporary symbol of rebirth. Exhibitions, events, debates, will make this pole for culture an element of necessary renewal. An architecture that will trasformer the ghetto in a new social integration area.


FIRST PRIZE: Cardinal Mathieu (FRANCE)

….. creating a public space is important for connecting different urban areas. The buildings must not be unconnected scenic scenes but become part of a single square system.The museum’s coverage will offer the site a different level of use. separate floors – exhibitions, concerts, moments of relaxation – lend themselves to multiple uses.The public outings become more in order, to encourage the contemplation of art.The rooms for permanent exhibitions, in search of more privacy, are protected by closed volumes, temporary exhibitions, however, are inserted in the spaces behind the windows in favor of a continuity between the private environment, illuminated by natural light, and public space.The light becomes a project element preponderant, it is intended to amplify the emotional perception of the places ….. “


SECOND PRIZE: Luca Pellerito, Elisa Sucameli (ITALY)

“…..the project takes shape from the intention to create a contrasting element with the surrounding territory and architectures, inserting itself, in a very clear way, between the historical scenes of the square. The volume is surrounded by strips of steel: the strips in Cor-ten become elements of memory recalling, like the wound blades, the penalties inflicted on the people during the Holocaust. The monolithic block in the center of the square serves to attract people to their interior in search of ideal protection. The complex is designed as a box in the box, in the center are the elements connecting the floors, the sides are arranged open exhibition rooms. At the hypogeal level, a space for permanent exhibitions, darkness becomes a moment of emotional perception from the dramatic atmosphere in memory of Jewish memory. In clear contrast with the underground there is the level of coverage, a refreshment area totally uncovered to enjoy panoramic views of the city….”


THIRD PRIZE: Laura Munoz Gonzàlez (ESPANA)

“…..the average intervention between the history of the place and the need for renewal that this suggests. The street level is totally free, it is an urban square for everyone; small volumes stand out indicating to the users the accesses to the hypogeal spaces illuminated by skylights inserted in the paving. An element of reference to the history of the place is the functional layout of the museum environments: the five exhibition rooms recall the number of synagogues that make up the Josefov district. The different rooms tell the moments of Jewish history, each one destined to its own temporal arch that goes from the XIII century, beginning of persecutions, up to the 20th century. What seems hidden from the square instead becomes an intimate evocative moment of memory…..”


MENTION: Selim Vural, Wipas Prasopchokchai (USA)

“….the aspiration of the program is to contribute to the revival of Jewish culture through an emotional approach to the project. The site has a consolidated historical identity, it was not necessary to build a new building but to use space as an element of valorisation. The rooms are hypogeal, located under a green roof that functions as an urban park: the access points, located on different sides of the square, allow the routes to establish a dynamic use of the green area to public service. This architecture is not a sign of contrast to the existences state but functions as a necessary new urban-scale seam…..”


MENTION: Mattew Peter Bunza, Xiaonuan Sun, Qijia Li (USA)

“…..the cover profile of the museum complex is reminiscent of the Star of David, a recognized symbol of Jewish culture. The green cover, designed as a new public space, provides cuts in specific points of the surface to allow light to penetrate into hypogeal environments. The main entrance is located on the main link road, the secondary entrances are inserted in the other points of the star, some of which point to the old city, recognized place of past persecutions. The continuity between the two levels of the building is established by a mutual search for openness: if the upper square functions as a meeting place for the entire community, the rooms located below street level are left totally free to allow users to experience the moments of aggregation in a fluid way. Facilitating cultural exchange through an experience of sharing and introspection becomes an essential part of the whole program…..”


MENTION: Olga Gumienna, Marcin Osak (POLAND)

“…..the new Prague Jewish Museum is located on a route that connects Prague’s historic center and the castle district. Currently, this square is a market in the district of Mala Strana, an identity of use that the new project intends to preserve for a flexibility of use that allows the new building to integrate itself best in community life in the neighborhood. The intervention presents itself with a declaredly introspective form: the surfaces are solid and compact, embodying a desire for identity that the Jewish propolis has never ceased to conclude. The central court allows light to penetrate, symbolizing the desire for openness to a new destiny. Open and closed systems are integrated to characterize a building that wants to become an ideal between past and future…..”


MENTION: Zlatimira Simeonova (BULGARIA)

“…..the project wants to integrate into the site through a respect for the state of affairs: the building has a reduced height not to obscure the reading of the historical facades that characterize the district. The diagonal separation between the two function blocks allows the internal spaces to keep a direct connection with the outside while the green cover is assigned the task to connect the two blocks built. The limestone, a material widely used in the local building tradition, covers the façades becoming a further sign of adhesion to the identity of the place. The staggered stone elements and the large glazed surfaces facilitate a dynamic reading of the building…..”

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