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arkt supply | Eger, Hungary

The latest episode of PACE Project and HYPEANDHYPER’s joint series once again presents a sustainable community project. Reinvented design process and collective construction by involving the local community – this is how Arkt Art Supply in Eger came to life.

In 2014, arkt studio was looking for a place where they could not only perform their design activities, but could also contribute to building and shaping the local community. Without any seed capital or larger commissions, they applied for the renovation of an existing, vacant building at the local government of Eger that no one finds inspiring enough to refurbish. Finally they have been granted a 15-year lease of the decaying state-owned building located in the middle of an old park.

The architects proposed a concept hinged on local needs – thus the renovation was planned in light of how they could fill the old house with added value, and how they could transform it into a new venue of cultural and art life. 

“We reversed the usual course of planning: first, we sought material support for the required tasks and then came up with architectural solutions to match the materials offered by the sponsors. In less than a year, we managed to renovate the building using the materials received and recycling the objects found on site“ – the architects say about the project realized in 2014. They also involved local high school students and the inmates of a penal institution in the planning and construction phases, thus the building became a textbook example of community architecture before it was even completed. Moreover the building itself was outshined by the social collaboration accompanying the renovation works. Today, it functions under the name Arkt Art Supply, as a community space and a creative workshop. 

Growing to love that we have, today – in a world where we are used to replacing everything with new – is more important than ever. With this caring attitude we become part of the collective community of past and present in a way never expected.

Péter Fejérdy DLA

In our series PACE X Hype and Hyper, we showcase a prominent contemporary public building from the Central Eastern European region each week. 

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