Prague

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Design

A Chunky Bronze Logo Wraps Around the Corner of a Prague Art Museum

December 1, 2021

Grace Ebert

All images courtesy of Studio Najbrt

A column of metallic type scales the former Zenger Transformer Substation in Prague, melding the historic venue with the visual identity of the new art institution housed in its space. Conceived by the Czech Republic-based Studio Najbrt, the uniquely positioned logo wraps vertically around the corner of the Kunsthalle Praha building and is based on a typeface by German designer Jan Tschichold, who created it in the 1930s around the time the station was built. Construction involved modeling the hinged letters in paper and modifying the forms to account for the central bend, a lengthy process you can see more of Studio Najbrt’s Instagram.

 

 

 



Design

Circular Vaults Embedded within a Prague Embankment Contain Shops, Cafes, and Public Spaces

October 18, 2021

Grace Ebert

All images © BoysPlayNice, courtesy of Brainworks

New cafes, galleries, and studios are popping up along the Vltava River in Prague, although they’re not immediately visible from atop the embankment. Tucked inside former storage units embedded within the structure itself are several tunnel-like spaces redesigned for public use. Appearing like glass-doored portals lining the waterfront, the multi-purpose project is part of the Czech city’s efforts to revitalize a four-kilometer swath of the riverbank, which previously served as a parking lot, and are the undertaking of architect Petr Janda who helms the Prague-based studio Brainwork.

Each vaulted venue contains concrete walls and flooring and gleaming stainless steel that reflects its surroundings. Six circular tunnels are designated for shops and galleries feature large, elliptical doors in glass, while the other 14 spaces are marked with a sculptural entrance, hiding the remaining area occupied by private tenants or used for public bathrooms from view. “The interventions symbiotically merge with the original architecture of the riverside wall, into which they naturally fuse,” Janda told designboom. “By using the acupuncture strategy, they re-create a monumental whole.”

Head to Instagram to find preliminary sketches for the redesign and to follow Brainwork’s future projects.

 

 

 



Animation Design History

Watch the 14th-Century Construction Process of Prague's Charles Bridge Unfold in a Meticulous Animation

October 30, 2020

Grace Ebert

Up until the mid-19th century, the only way to cross the Vltava River in Prague was to head over the gothic stone arches of the Charles Bridge. The project of King Charles IV, construction of the now iconic structure began in 1357 after a flood damaged the existing walkway. A short animation by Engineering and Architecture peers back into history to chronicle the centuries-old building process as it shows wooden trusses framing the structure and bricks seemingly sprinkling into place. While the video collapses decades of work into less than a minute, the Charles Bridge wasn’t complete until the early 15th century.

Find more of Engineering and Architecture’s construction studies on Instagram and YouTube. (via Laughing Squid)

 

 

 



Art Design

A Contemporary Art Center in Prague Builds 138-Foot Rooftop Airship as a Home for Public Events

September 22, 2016

Christopher Jobson

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(AP Photo/Petr David Josek) All images licensed for use on Colossal.

An enormous object resembling a zeppelin has just been built atop the Dox Center for Contemporary Art in Prague. The 138-foot structure (42-meter) won’t be taking to the sky anytime soon, but will instead be utilized as a public gathering space for readings, performances, and debates about literature. The wooden airship-like building is situated atop a cascade of steps on the Dox center’s roof and should accommodate up to 120 seated visitors.

The alternative meeting space was designed as part of a collaboration between the center’s founder and director, Leos Valka, and architect Martin Rajnis who won the 2014 Global Award for Sustainable Architecture. “Our aim for the world of contemporary art is to spread and get partially interconnected with the world of literature,” Valka shared with the AP at a preview event this week. “It’s a world of pure imagination, a children’s world.” Rajnis recently gave a Creative Mornings talk in Prague titled Embrace the Weird.

The airship has officially been named Gulliver, after the fictional protagonist and narrator of Jonathan Swift’s famous Gulliver’s Travels. You can see more process photos on Pinterest, Google Photos, and on Facebook.

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(AP Photo/Petr David Josek)

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(AP Photo/Petr David Josek)

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(AP Photo/Petr David Josek)

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(AP Photo/Petr David Josek)

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Photo courtesy HAMR Huť architektury Martin Rajniš.

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Photo courtesy HAMR Huť architektury Martin Rajniš.

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Photo courtesy HAMR Huť architektury Martin Rajniš.

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Photo courtesy HAMR Huť architektury Martin Rajniš.

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Photo by Matej Slávik / HN

 

 



Art

A Rotating 42-Layer Sculpture of Franz Kafka's Head by David Cerny

May 18, 2016

Christopher Jobson

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Located in a busy shopping center in Prague, this twisting and reflective sculpture depicting the head of writer Franz Kafka is the latest kinetic artwork by controversial Czech artist David Cerny. Installed in 2014, the enormous mirrored bust is comprised of 42 independently driven layers of stainless steel and weighs in at some 45 tons. The piece brilliantly reveals Kafka’s tortured personality and unrelenting self doubt that plagued him his entire life. The layering of objects is a common motif for Cerny who built a similar rotating head that also functions as a fountain titled Metalmorphosis. (thnx, Chelsea & Diana!)

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David Černý, kinetic Head of Franz Kafka, Prague. Photo by Jindřich Nosek via Wikimedia Commons.

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David Černý, kinetic Head of Franz Kafka, Prague. Photo by Jindřich Nosek via Wikimedia Commons.

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David Černý, kinetic Head of Franz Kafka, Prague. Photo by Jindřich Nosek via Wikimedia Commons.

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David Černý, kinetic Head of Franz Kafka, Prague. Photo by Jindřich Nosek via Wikimedia Commons.

 

 



Art

Dozens of Cement People Dangling from Umbrellas in a Prague Office Building

December 20, 2012

Christopher Jobson

These cement figures dangling from umbrellas within a narrow space inside the EBC office center in Prague are part of a installation titled Slight Uncertainty by Czech artist Michal Trpák. Check out much more of his sculptural work on his website.