Pilecki Family Museum balances a historic house, new pavilion, and garden with a compelling museum design narrative

Pilecki Family Museum balances a historic house, new pavilion, and garden with a compelling museum design narrative

4 Aug 2021 News

Balancing three elements – a historic house, a new pavilion, and a garden – the Pilecki Family Museum by BDR Architekci is dedicated to famous World War II hero Witold Pilecki and his family. It is one of the last places to commemorate him, as the family home near Lida was demolished after the war. 

Konrad Basan

The house component of the museum is the former family home of Pilecki’s wife. A central element of the museum, the house was thoroughly restored and reconstructed from archival photos. Cellars were deepened and the attic rebuilt while original details, cornices and window frames were reconstructed. So as not to interfere with the external structure, wall insulation was added from the inside. The house is now dedicated to the museum’s permanent exhibition.

Michal Czechowicz

Separated from the house via a long glass connector, a new pavilion refers to basic architectural elements such as material, rhythm and the interpenetration of interior and exterior space. The new structure is introduced in a harmonious and subtle way by leaving the garden and house in the foreground. The southern side of the pavilion is surrounded by a columned arcade while an entrance hall on the ground floor has a café open to the garden, a meeting room, and an office.

Michal Czechowicz

A spacious stair connects the pavilion with an underground that houses a technical area, cloakroom, and exhibition room. This exhibition room connects to the exhibition space in the house basement.

Michal Czechowicz

A small town ornamental garden merges the historical house together with the new pavilion. A traditional kitchen and decorative garden dissect the division of crops into flowers, ornamental plants and the kitchen part with fruit and vegetables. The remaining garden space provides places to sit and a centrally located square for outdoor events.

Konrad Basan

Devoid of a heavy museum narrative, the three components together strengthen and reinforce the telling of the Pilecki family history.

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