Text and Photo: René Jakl
Above the Sázava valley and near
the town of Čerčany, 40 kilometers from Prague, a remarkable
two-story home designed by the architects Jiří Smolík and Zdeněk
Rychtařík rises out of the slope.
Open inside and out: expansive glass walls open the interior to
FINISHED IN 2000, the house is unique in terms of materials used,
external appearance and internal arrangement. The unplastered architectural
concrete on the glassy ground floor looks raw, but the facade of
the overhanging second floor, sheathed in wooden planks, provides
a warmer feeling. The study that constitutes the third floor is
reminiscent of a captain's bridge. The construction authority initially
considered the project overly audacious, but the owners were able
to push through a change in the land plan. The result is a stylistically
clean building refined down to the last detail, including custom-made
The ground floor does not follow the classic layout
of rooms - division of spaces is only suggested. The open gallery
above the dining table optically unites the ground floor with the
The fireplace also follows the functionalist concept,
appearing to be cut into the horizontal ashlar of the chimney.
The blue and ochre kitchen has modern fittings,
as does the rest of the ground floor, but otherwise it does not
differ much from a typical kitchen.
With its stepped structure the building fits into
the undulating land, which makes it stand out. The landscaping
is stylish, but also simple and effective. Under the rear overhang,
wood for the fireplace is stored.
from the outside
Architect, Vyšehrad Studio
You worked out the details
of this house, which has won awards abroad. What does it
mean to you, and what was your cooperation with the owner
like on such an unusual project?
"It was one of the first larger projects that our studio prepared,
and we were able to put our theoretical concepts into practice in
it. I greatly appreciate the trust of the owners, who now occupy
the house. From the time we created a working model they allowed
us absolute freedom. We also designed the associated interior layout,
as well as the landscaping and hundreds of technical details, such
as the frameless mounting of the windows. It was great that we were
able to carry our ideas to the end, without having to compromise."