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"An egg shell is a sophisticated work of engineering". OVO Grąbczewscy Architekci in the spring edition of FOPA 2024

06 of May '24

Ahead of us is the next spring edition of the Festival of Open Architectural Studios an event accompanying the International Congress on Culture of the Regenerative City. We will start FOPA in Katowice, at the headquarters of the OVO Grąbczewscy Architekci studio, where Oskar Grąbczewski will show us around.

Broadcast of the meetings will be available on our channels




We will start the spring edition of the Festival of Open Architectural Studios in Silesia, at the headquarters of OVO Grąbczewscy Architekci (May 13 at 13.00), then we will move to Warsaw, where we will have a look at the offices of WWAA (May 16 at 13.00) and Grupa 5 Architekci(May 17 at 13.00). Live broadcasts will be available on A&B's Facebook and YouTube!

OVO Grąbczewscy Architekci
May 13, 1 pm

We will start the festival at the family-run OVO Grąbczewscy Architekci. The Katowice office was founded in 2002 by Barbara and Oskar Grąbczewscy, who were joined 11 years later by Marek Grąbczewski and in 2017 by Kamil Kajdas. The studio has projects on all scales from urban planning, architecture of public buildings, private buildings, houses, interiors to art installations, exhibitions and furniture.

Muzeum Ognia w Żorach, 2015

Museum of Fire in Zory, 2015

Photo: Tomasz Zakrzewski © Illustrations courtesy of the studio

The team has won more than a hundred international and national awards, honors and nominations for its work, including the SARP Award of the Year for the best building completed in Poland in 2006 (the Paleontological Pavilion in Krasiejów designed jointly with Goczołowie Architekci), Nomination for the Mies van der Rohe Award in 2017 (for the design of the Fire Museum in Żory), the Grand Prix of the Architecture of the Year competition of the Silesian Voivodeship in 2021 (for the design of EXG's headquarters in Częstochowa) or the Accessibility Leader 2023 Award from the Chancellery of the President of Poland in the Architect category.

Siedziba firmy EXG w Częstochowie, 2021

EXG company headquarters in Częstochowa, 2021

Photo: Tomasz Zakrzewski © Illustrations courtesy of the studio

OVO's major projects also include: OAZA Sports and Recreation Center in Kórnik (together with MA Zgraja Architects), Health and Welfare Center in Gierałtowice, Health Center inPrzyszowice, Łaźnia Łańcuszkowa in Kopalnia Luiza in Zabrze (together with Konior Studio), Administrative Center of Wielka Wieś Commune or interiors of apartments in Katowice's Nikiszowiec district.

Currently, the studio's team is supervising the implementation of the KTBS residential complex at Mariacka Street in Katowice and the Cognitarium Knowledge Center in Koszalin, both investments are the result of winning architectural competitions.

wnętrza apartamentów na katowickim Nikiszowcu, 2022

Interiors of apartments in Katowice's Nikiszowiec, 2022

Photo: Tomasz Zakrzewski © Illustrations courtesy of the studio

Are you curious about how projects are created in the Silesian office? Or are you intrigued by the OVO in the studio's name? Get your questions ready, because you will have the opportunity to ask them already on May 13, and in the meantime we invite you to a short Q&A session with Oskar Grąbczewski!

Ola Kloc: Where did the name of the studio come from?

Oskar Grąbczewski: OVO means "egg" in Latin. When we founded our atelier 22 years ago, we chose this name in order, first, not to perceive ourselves too seriously, second, to remember that the most sophisticated works of engineering, such as an eggshell, are the work of nature, which we should always respect, and third, to make it short and easy to remember.

Ola: The studio is for us...

Oskar: The atelier is a second home for us we practically do not divide our time into private and professional, it all somehow naturally merges and intermingles.

Pawilon Paleontologiczny w Krasiejowie (wraz z Goczołowie Architekci), 2006

Paleontological Pavilion in Krasiejów (together with Goczołowie Architekci), 2006

Photo: Daniel Rumiancew © Illustrations courtesy of the studio

Ola: What was your first joint project about?

Oskar: Our first joint project was a competition for a 21st century Gdańsk townhouse we got an honorable mention for it, which made us very happy. The first joint project completed was the staircases in the family home designed entirely by Basia the entrance staircase, the interior spiral staircase and the staircase leading to the terrace, which we also had the opportunity to build ourselves together with our parents. When Marek joined us, our first joint project was murals in the interiors of the Health Center in Gierałtowice, and our first joint competition was an award-winning work for the Museum of Ethnography in Budapest. The first joint project with Kamil, in turn, was an award-winning competition design for the Malopolska Science Center in Krakow.... In fact, every project is a first in a sense.

Ośrodek Zdrowia i Pomocy Społecznej w Gierałtowicach, 2011 

Health and Welfare Center in Gierałtowice, 2011

Photo: Tomasz Zakrzewski © Illustrations courtesy of the studio

Ola: The dream project is...

Oskar: A dream project is any project we undertake, regardless of scale or budget. In general, design is a dream come true for us all the time ideally, if we manage to fulfil both our and the investor's dreams.

Ola: Our favourite design tool is...

Oskar: Our favourite design tool is our hands it's great to use them to draw, make mock-ups, point a finger at something on a construction site, or expressively wave them around during discussions together, or even to present a project to an investor.

Łaźnia Łańcuszkowa w Kopalni Luiza w Zabrzu (wraz z Konior Studio), 2016

Chain Bath in the Luiza Mine in Zabrze (with Konior Studio), 2016

Photo: Tomasz Zakrzewski © Illustrations courtesy of the studio

Ola: Does the team have any regular customs / rituals?

Oskar: The coolest are, of course, occasions involving gifts and sweets everyone's birthday, Christmas. Very enjoyable are joint local visits to sites of new projects, often combined with a tour of the surrounding architectural works. It's super to celebrate winning competitions, but it's also surprisingly enjoyable to take revenge on the jury and the competition in case of losing.


The Open Architecture Studio Festival is a companion event to the International Congress on the Culture of the Regenerative City.

Partners are:

SARP Branch Krakow
SARP Łódź Branch

Ola Kloc

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