Department of Architecture at the Faculty of Civil Engineering in Bratislava
The close connection between architecture and building construction is a basic prerequisite for the production of quality building works. It is also a reflection of the level of building culture in the area. It was a typical feature of our university system, which educated graduates from the 1950s, first at the Faculty of Architecture and Civil Engineering and later, until 1976 at the Faculty of Civil Engineering, when an independent Faculty of Architecture was established at the then Slovak university of technologies. From then until 1990, the relatively highly specialized art-typological education of architects became more and more different from the exact technical teaching of civil engineers at the Faculty of Civil Engineering. Changes in higher education after 1990 (when Slovak University of Technologies also changed to STU – Slovak Technical University) were the reason for higher autonomy of faculties, which could respond more flexibly to the needs of the market generated by practice in the way of educating graduates.
For the given reasons, the tendencies of re-finding the links between architecture and building construction are also beginning to be shown more significantly at the Faculty of Civil Engineering of the Slovak Technical University in Bratislava. In 1990, the Department of Architectural Teaching was established at the Department of Structural Engineering. Its origin was caused by the mentioned changes in the concept of teaching in the field of Civil Engineering, which was the first in Czechoslovakia to be accredited under the name of Civil Engineering and Architecture (PSA) and supplemented by architectural teaching, which was absent before 1989. The head of the department was Doc. Ing. Arch. Jozef Liščák, PhD., who also provided teaching through important guest teachers, such as the important ethnographer PhDr. Soňa Kovačevičová, DrSc.
The mentioned Department of Architectural Teaching can be considered as a predecessor of the current Department of Architecture, which had separated from it in 1996 and continued to function as a separate profile department. At the time of its establishment, the department represented a form of reminiscence of the original Faculty of Architecture and Civil Engineering, due to the professional profile of the majority of teachers who founded the department. These were personalities of Slovak and Czech architecture, such as doc. Ing. arch Jozef Liščák, PhD. , doc. Ing. Peter Špička, PhD., doc. Ing. arch. Elena Dohňanská, PhD., doc. Ing. arch. akad. arch Ľubomír Titl, prof. Ing. Arch. Mojmir Kyselka, Phd. and prof. Ing. arch. akad. arch. Miloslav Mudrončík. They laid the foundation for teaching, in which the complexity of the architectural and construction profession was again understood. In 2003, the Department of Architecture was entered in the international list of schools of architecture as the 4th school of architecture in Slovakia.
Today's Department of Architecture represents a workplace of a new type, drawing on the tradition of its predecessors, especially in its ambition to continue the complexity of education. In addition to the traditional architecture and construction dimension, the content of teaching responds to current problems of society and the environment. The interdisciplinary study program Civil Engineering and Architecture more clearly defines the multi-layered problem of sustainability, with emphasis on its architectural manifestations in new trends, requiring new philosophical and technical solutions. Education is more significantly focused on redefining the concept of building culture, which in principle is primarily about extending the life of the existing structure. In the spirit of sustainability, new trends will then be transformed into the principles of circular economy, protection and renewal of identity. Much more broad is the notion of restoration, which can be applied with varying degrees of flexibility both in listed structures and in other, often disturbing structures.
The main credo of the department is the Education of the young generation of designers to a comprehensive empathy for the environment.
This clearly defined trend is provided in teaching by teachers, working evenly in the academic environment and practice. In the spirit of interdisciplinarity, they cooperate with several faculties of Slovak and foreign universities. The team developed a project of the UNESCO Department for Interdisciplinary Restoration of Architectural Heritage, in which, for the first time in Slovakia, an interdisciplinary professional platform is established, which also participates in the teaching of dissidents.