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History of the Building

The historic building was built in 1909-1912 according to the plans of the prominent Czech architect Jan Kotěra (1871-1923). The project originated between 1907-1908 as a commission by the Museum Board of Trustees. Its final version resulted in a piece of architecture that is not only spectacular and symbolic, but also practical, providing the necessary facilities for the operational needs of the museum. Kotěra used an asymmetric layout, with the ground plan of the building based on a Latin cross pattern, with the right (southern) wing housing the lecture hall shifted several metres compared to the northern wing.
skica definitivního návrhu budovy
The basement includes workshops, rooms for technological collections, changing rooms, bathrooms, a storeroom, boiler room, caretaker’s space, a lapidarium and a workshop yard. The ground floor houses the great reading room with 62 table seats, the library, the director’s office, the vestibule, the cloak room, the grand 200-seat lecture hall, the gallery and the lecturer’s room. The first floor houses the decorative arts collections and the grand exhibition hall spans the first and second floors, specially fitted with ceiling lighting. The second floor is divided between the prehistoric exhibition space and the history museum exhibits. Both floors also feature curators’ rooms and storerooms. A photographic studio with ceiling lighting and a darkroom, as well as several laboratories and a conservation hall are situated on the third floor. Spacious terraces are situated on either side of the flat roofs.
Construction of the building, one of the most beautiful in Hradec Králové, was very fast. Digging started at the beginning of May 1909 and the third floor was completed as early as 22nd August 1910. Work on the cupola was completed on 13th September 1910. The building was constructed using ‘fair-faced’ brickwork, made out of pressed, partially glazed bricks. Plastering and other materials were used for providing the finish to the prominent architectural details on the façade.
The spring of 1911 saw the completion of ornamental and figural works made of baked glazed clay, including two allegorical seated female figures representing the Arts (History) and Industry (the latter also depicting a bronze male figure symbolising the town of Hradec Králové). Both statues were designed by Stanislav Sucharda. Further craftwork followed in 1912, when, among other items, stained glass windows were added to the vestibules and to the staircase, designed by František Kysela.
budova muzea na Eliščině nábřeží
Further modifications followed after World War I. A light holder – made according to Jan Kotěra’s designs at the School of Art Metalwork in Hradec Králové – was installed on the staircase leading to the second floor in January 1924. In the summer of 1931, the cupola on the second floor was decorated with four mosaics by the painter Josef Novák in collaboration with the Glass Institute in Hradec Králové according to the pastel drawings of Jan Preisler.
The entire project was completed in June 1934 with the installation of a large fountain outside the museum, one of the many joint projects of the state vocational schools. As well as the fountain, Kotěra designed most of the interior furnishings, including those of the reading room and the lecture hall.
In 1995, the museum building was declared a national cultural monument and underwent extensive interior reconstruction in 1999-2002.
architekt Jan Kotěra  1898
architekt Jan Kotěra kolem 1910
nerealizovaný návrh  budovy muzea architekta Jana Kouly
skica budovy věnovaná F. Ulrichovi
skica definitivního návrhu  budovy
skica první varianty návrhu
stavba muzea
Budova muzea na Eliščině nábřeží je z důvodů přípravy nové expozice a výstav do listopadu 2019 uzavřena. Rádi Vás uvítáme v expozici Muzea války 1866 na Chlumu a na muzejních akcích. Děkujeme za pochopení. Více...

© 2018 Muzeum východních Čech v Hradci Králové, Eliščino nábřeží 465, Hradec Králové
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