4TH International FUTUWAWA Competition – „Look at the Square”

3D view

PiK-NiK, Square of Tadeusza Kantor – of Nature and Culture

Piotr Szcześniak (Bygg Architecture)

Square of Tadeusz Kantor – Nature and Culture, shortly PiK-NiK, is a transformation of Plac Defilad into a new multifunctional public space, tailored to the ambitions of Warsaw and to the needs of its resident. It aims to be a contemporary Roman Forum, a place for meeting, culture, recreation and events.

Pik-Nik is a fusion of two elements that characterize Warsaw: green area with a picnic / festival atmosphere and culture, high culture and as well as bottom up. Currently, Plac Defilad is a big hub of culture: the Palace of Culture with its museums and theaters (Lalka, Dramatyczny, Studio), and the soon coming TR and Museum of Modern Art (MSN). Therefore, the square has been renamed after Tadeusz Kantor, one of the most important Polish artists of the twentieth century.

In this project, we combined the picnic and festival atmosphere of Warsaw with urbanity and culture by applying many intersecting layers and elements. The outer area of the square is a routing zone for pedestrians and bicycles. Closer to the center of the square, an urban meadow has been located, a ring of green and flowering terraces with benches (the square is characterized by more than 3 m height difference). On the western side, this ring serves as a grand tribune to watch the scene of urban live, which is the actual plateau of PiK-NiK. From the east, it is a tribune for MSN and Marszałkowska Street.

The central plateau is large enough to host large events but at the same time be friendly. The dimensions (70x100m) are similar to Rynek Starego Miasta. Intimacy of this space is further emphasized by a double row of trees around the plateau.

The square's plateau is equipped with water features - fountains, which, for example during hot days can become big basin filling up the entire square, in the winter can become a large ice skating venue and during events it can completely disappear. Also LED illumination allows creating different scenarios and atmospheres.


Piotr Szcześniak (Bygg Architecture)

Architect born in Warsaw (1986), received bacholar degree in architecture at Warsaw University of Technology and master degree at Eindhoven University of Technology (NL). He is co-founder of Bygg Architecture in Eindhoven, which specializes in social design, Circular Economy and public spaces. In the portfolio, Bygg Architecture has several projects in Poland: Moderna OdNova (winner of 2nd Futuwawa), Stary Rynek w Częstochowie (2nd prize) and Ogród Toda (honorable mention in competition to commemorate Poles who rescued Jews during the German occupation).