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Brno Architecture Manual

 

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C321

FACULTY OF FORESTRY – UNIVERSITY OF AGRICULTURE 1922

 

Zemědělská 810/3 (Černá Pole) Brno Sever

Public transport: Zemědělská (TRAM 9, 11)

GPS: 49°12'38.764"N, 16°37'4.396"E

 

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Another agriculture school was opended in the newly formed Czechoslovakia in 1919; the new institution based in Brno was intended to attract mainly students from Moravia and Slovakia. Part of the institute for the blind in Černá Pole, which had been completed a short time earlier, was made available for the university's needs. However, this facility soon proved insufficient and the regional committee decided to build a new building nearby to house the research institutions and the Faculty of Forestry.
The committee assigned the task of preparing the plans to chief builder František Utíkal and their final version clearly demonstrated the retrograde approach embraced by the design office staff, who had not broken free from Austro-Hungarian historicising standards. The structure consists of two six-level wings with the main entrance on the corner, the facades of which are decorated with pilasters and Ionic columns and copy the formal features of the neighbouring older building for the Institute for the Blind. Furthermore, the layout consists of narrow corridors and rows of rooms without any apparent functional differentiation or attempt to respond to the particular needs of the college.
The construction of the Faculty of Forestry was a highly controversial project, as it evoked a number of negative reactions from professionals and the general public alike. The Moravia Regional Committee faced criticism for its adherence to stale architectural procedures and the mechanical adoption of a formal feature without any relation to the function of the building. The period press published articles calling for quality designs by young architects who, at the time, were forced to eke out a living while the positions they should be holding were filled by uneducated clerks. There were also voices encouraging architectural competitions and wider discussions of the appearance of institutions of nation-wide importance.

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