Manggha Center of Japanese Art and Technology
1990 - 1994
Site Area: 4,000 sqmBuilding Area: 2,120 sqmTotal Floor Area: 3,590 sqm
Official Web Site
When the polish film director Andzej Wajida received the 1987 Kyoto Prize, he announced that he would use the prize money to help construct a Japanese art center in Krakow. As a student when the country was under Nazi occupation, he happened to visit the Jasienski collection in the city, and this opened his eye to art. However, today, there is no place to exhibit the collection, and the works are in storage. The plan is to create a facility that will show the collection publicly and at the same time introduce contemporary Japanese culture.
Today, new materials and technology of course are coming into use in architecture in Poland, but we decided that it would be more appropriate to limit the technology and materials to those that were the easiest to use and the most available, to build the architectural framework with them, and to employ high-tech systems such as electronics on the inside and the exhibition. The building is basically brick construction with parts strengthened with reinforced concrete. The roof is wood and connected by the minimum steel material necessary. Zinc or lead sheets were used on top and follow the undulating roof form.
The building is located on the bank of the Vislula River. A broad, covered terrace provide s a view of Wawel Castle and the old city area on the opposite bank. There are large openings such as windows on the riverbank side, but the opposite side facing Konopnicka Street, which sees a great deal of traffic, is closed.