Kurvantai Zaitov ('The Ritual Theatre'), net afgestudeerd aan onze Faculteit Architectuur en Kunst Universiteit Hasselt, won gisteren de Euregionale Architectuurprijs (EAP). Ook alumna Anne Vandecraen ('Bovenkamer') kreeg een eervolle vermelding.
De EAP bekroont jaarlijks de beste afstudeerprojecten met een architecturale dimensie van de opleidingen in de Euregio Maas-Rijn. De opleidingen van Maastricht, Diepenbeek, Aken en Luik gaan met elkaar in competitie om het beste ontwerp. Dit jaar nam ook de TU Eindhoven, als gastuniversiteit, mee aan de competitie.
Door de ogen van de internationale jury
The first prize goes to a project located in Maastricht (NL). It was in many ways outstanding; being also the best poetic or dream-like and - at the same time - actual project. The project starts from a master plan for an urban development at the site of an old quarry. The master plan uses the level differences left behind by the exploitation and proposes a linear assemblage of high-rise buildings, accommodating diverse functions. The awarded project, that could be called a “Theatre for Death”, allocates a new version of a cemetery inside one of the towers. It is composed of rooms each evoking a different way of dealing with death and mourning (the cold chamber, the theater, etc.). As these rooms pile up vertically and are interconnected by intricate circulation areas, each individual burial ceremony can be scripted differently along specific rooms, according to a chosen sequence. The jury is astounded by the research that stretches from indigenous rituals to more Western, recent versions of death-related ceremonies. The way these rituals are translated into architecture, demonstrates the acute sensibility of the author and his poetic talent to get hold of death. Moreover, by choosing to position this facility, dedicated to the dead, in the midst of the city, next to housing and other ancillary facilities, the project raises the question of how to spatially merge life and death. Or, how to integrate death into our daily lives, a question that the current sanitary crisis has brought violently to the fore.
This project is a sculptural pavilion which physically defines a guided path. The design reflects and imagines the phases or stages of the author’s dream. From the outside there is nothing to be seen, inside the visitor is guided through a linear sequence of very skilfully shaped rooms with impressive tactile qualities. In that way, the visitor becomes the actor. The jury admired this highly personal work, the poetic approach, the profound research and the self-explaining beautifully executed drawings. Yet, this very personal approach to design, inspired the jury to a controversial discussion. The main contribution of this brilliant, scenographic project and its high-level presentation is that it plunges the spectator skilfully into the abstract universe of the unconscious.
Het volledige verslag
Wij feliciteren uiteraard Kurvantai en Anne met hun prestaties, maar willen zeker ook Tim De Munck, Tom Lambrechts, Lies Verheyden, Laurens Van de Vel en Jan Vanduffel danken voor de inzet die ze getoond hebben om onze faculteit met trots te verdedigen.