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Emil Michalczewski - "The concept of modernization of Janowiec Castle. Permanent ruins in the context of modernity".

14 of October '22
Technical data
Type: master's thesis
Year of defense: 2022
Name: "Concept of modernization of the Castle in Janowiec. Permanent ruins in the context of modernity".
Author: Emil Michalczewski
University: Faculty of Interior Design and Scenography, Magdalena Abakanowicz University of Arts in Poznan.

Piotr Machowiak Ph.D. Prof. UAP

Work submitted for the competition
"Best Interior Diploma 2021/2023".

The base of the project is a Renaissance castle maintained in the form of a permanent ruin located in Janowiec, Lubelskie province. Situated on a high escarpment of the Vistula River, degraded by time and historical events, the building forms a landscape dominant, thus being an important element of the region. The main idea of the presented concept is to integrate modern architecture, materials and textures, which through contrast will reveal the beauty of the historic structure of the historic walls. The castle has been expanded three times in the past, but has been falling into increasing disrepair for a long time.

Koncepcja modernizacji Zamku w Janowcu, wieża

Concept for modernization of Janowiec Castle, observation tower

© Emil Michalczewski

The modernization presented here is the next step in the story, which aims to extend the life of the building and increase its functionality. The new concept for Janowiec Castle expands the tourist and cultural program, focusing on its exploration, while ensuring further protection of the site. The scope of the study delineates most of the inner area of the castle delineated around the Grand Courtyard, located directly next to the gatehouse and the bridge with the dry moat.

Concept of the modernization of the Castle in Janowiec, projection of level 0

Concept for the modernization of the Janowiec Castle, 0 level projection

© Emil Michalczewski

The purpose of the modernization is to prepare the building in such a way that more events can be held here and more people can visit, taking into account current standards. Due to its significant historical value to the area and Polish culture as a whole, any changes to the existing facility had to be kept to a minimum. The characteristics of the site maintained in the form of a permanent ruin, partially devoid of vaults, prompted reinforcements to secure the current state.

Koncepcja modernizacji Zamku w Janowcu, wnętrze

Janowiec Castle modernization concept, interior

© Emil Michalczewski

The exception in the interference was the anchoring of steel structures in the preserved foundations or technically stable ceilings, thus creating more opportunities for the erection of new functional volumes and canopies distanced from the fragile walls.

Concept for modernization of Janowiec Castle, cross sections

Concept for the modernization of Janowiec Castle, sections

© Emil Michalczewski

New functions have been located in the designed architecture - a museum of ruins/lapidarium and an observation tower, while the existing ruins have also been adapted into guest hotel rooms, a restaurant and a stage. The functional layout closely resembles the final stage of construction in the 17th century, converting the functions of the residence into museums.

Koncepcja modernizacji Zamku w Janowcu, klatka schodowa, widok na restaurację

Staircase, view of the restaurant

© Emil Michalczewski

The spatial layout of the new elements is a kind of interpretation of the past with simplified shapes. The resulting museum of ruins on the site of the former Firlej palace replaces the former residence in terms of dimensions. The characteristic form of the pilastered roof, together with the slope of the elevation visible from the courtyard, creates the largest volume with three floors, along with a first floor - open.

Koncepcja modernizacji Zamku w Janowcu, wnętrze wieży

interior of the observation tower

© Emil Michalczewski

The new observation tower located in the place of the no longer existing (eastern) one also refers to its older version. The cylindrical form topped at the top with a geometric steel and glass dome creates the highest vantage point in the castle overlooking the panorama of the Vistula River and Kazimierz Dolny. On the last tier of the tower there is a large platform accessed by a winding staircase supported by a central pillar. The chapel was enclosed on the inside and roofed with a steel and glass structure to naturally illuminate the small stage on the first floor.

Koncepcja modernizacji Zamku w Janowcu, pokój hotelwy

hotel room

© Emil Michalczewski

The color scheme of the materials in the added elements is natural so as not to dominate the ruins, as are the new shapes. Glass infills have been used extensively to expose and direct the eye to the history written in the walls. Unusual displays on the walls were further complemented by locally translucent ceilings and platforms, allowing the historic layouts to be explored from a completely different perspective.


Illustrations: © Author

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