”Budapest appears on the map”

Architects’ round-table discussion about the results so far of the Liget Project design competition

MúzeumCafé 46.

At the end of last year an international jury announced the first four winners of the design competition for new museum buildings in Budapest’s City Park. The jury was not satisfied with plans for the fifth building, so a new contest was announced. The winning designs for four buildings and further awarded works were displayed at the Design Terminal in central Budapest. On the initiative of MúzeumCafé and with the involvement of the Design Terminal and the Contemporary Architecture Centre (CAC), three Hungarian architects were invited to the exhibition to respond to questions about the part of the competition. The three architects were Zsolt Gunther, who took part in the competition, Bálint Kádár, the former Hungarian adviser of a renowned foreign architectural studio (neither of whom were among the winners or other awardees) and Tamás Karácsony, who did not enter the contest, though he won an earlier competition for designing the expansion of the Fine Arts Museum which, before it could be realised, was suddenly cancelled by a government decree (see MúzeumCafé 14). Leading the discussion were architect and urbanist Samu Szemerey on behalf of the Design Terminal and the CAC, while MúzeumCafé was represented by Gábor Martos. The participants gave their opinions about the submitted designs, then besides analysing the plans they spoke about the relationship between the Hungarian profession and the designs. An interesting issue concerns what kind of relation will be established between the new buildings and those which are already there. In spite its trees, plants and green areas, the City Park possesses a fairly rich architectural heritage. The question is how the new buildings can fit into this manifestation of tradition.