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  • A Stop-Gap Building

    The House of Jewish Excellences, Balatonfüred

    Architect: Péter Sugár
    Text: Tamás Kiss
    Photos: Tamás Bujnovszky

    In Balatonfüred, more precisely in the district named Ófalu there is an old-new building standing in Bajcsy-Zsilinszky Road that reflects rational simplicity. Behind the stone fence there is an archetypal building mass with white plastered walls, a pitched roof with fired tiles, and motifs on the eastern gable with sacred symbolic meanings: a window ending in a semi-circular arch and the stona tablets of the ten commandments at the top of the western gable. At the eastern end of the old structure, respecting the sovereignity of it, a hardly visible glass neck connects it to the new communal building also housing an interactive exhibition. This homogeneous cube clad in anthracite coloured metal sheets stand only a few meters away from the old one. The strikingly different, characteristic appearance and the simplicity of the composition are results of deliberate choices of the designer architect. Within the coherent whole every architectural component appears as clean: each is an independent unit with materials homogeneously used. Because of the lack of authentic data, it was impossible to restore the destroyed interior of the former synagogue. However, even in its present-day conditions the space has remarkable effects. Covered with a barrel vault, the interior creates a sacred atmosphere with its representative appearance resulting from white paint, sterile conditions stripped of every superfluous flourish.

    General design: Radius B+ S Kft (Péter Sugár) and Grafit Műterem Kft (Piroska Varga)
    Leading architect: Péter Sugár
    Interiors: Piroska Varga
    Architects: László Kara (authorization plan), Marcell Balázs, Piroska Varga (construction plan)
    Fellow architects: Judit Boda, Mónika Lamann, Dorottya Pentaller, Éva Szilágyi (construction plan), Ivett Fekete (interior plan)
    Archaeology: Dr. Csaba László, Szabolcs Balázs Nagy
    Art history: Györgyi Tóth
    Framework: Csaba Czégeni
    Structure: András D. Nagy, Zsolt Tóth
    Electrical engineering: József Handó
    HVAC: András Oltvai
    Gardening: Krisztina Wallner
    Fire protection: Orsolya Brindzik
    Acoustics and environment: Gusztáv Józsa
    Graphic design: Piroska Varga, Hedvig Rivó
    Main contractor: Gótika Építőipari Kft.
    Client: Municipality of Balatonfüred, Mayor Dr. István Bóka
    Client (interior plan): Magyar Zsidó Kulturális Egyesület (MAZSIKE)
    Concept, digital content: Dr. Ferenc Olti