The former city-architect of Zurich, mr. Steiner really created a monumental example of cremation architecture.
The monumental modern building is situated on the site of a very nice graveyard and it has a very clear layout. We had a good impresssion before we moved on to Zurich.
It was interesting to see how up-to-date this crematorium, originally designed by Ernst Wiesner still is. Its characteristic needle-pointed pillars and the glass roof still give this building a unique esthetic.
We were enthousiastic to see that the addition made was very much in sync with both the building as its modern intent.
We were kindly received by the manager mr. Anděl who showed us the building and its dayly workings. This crematorium is truely impressive. Although the crematorium breathes monumentality this is pleasantly countercted by the social way the people of Prague have integrated it in everyday life.
We were here since next to the old monumental crematorium a modern addition was built (right behind the trees on the right side of this picture). If you google it you will find some pictures, also from the interior (we wonder..). although we were just visiting a ‘tourists’ now it was quite interesting. If this crematorium ends up in our final selection we might take the efford to try and visit it officially at some point.
The columbarium (in the middle section) is an intergarated part of the building, connecting the morgue building and the ceremonal building. The actual crematorium is located underneath the ceremonial building (on the right with chimney on the image).
The ashes of historic figures like Bertha von Suttner (Nobel price for peace for her effords in womens emancipation) are kept here.
The crematorium is an autonomous modern building right next to the older chapel. Surprising to us was the fact that entering the crematorium you are at once in the cremation-room which can also be used for a small ceremony on request. The crematorium and the other facilities on the site like the chapel and morgue are connected on subterranean level.
With a farewell, a cremation or burial, the sequence of rituals is important for comfort and remembrance. In recent years, some beautiful auditoriums and crematoria which accommodate those rituals were realised in the Netherlands. They offer peace and make introspection possible, but they are also spatially exciting.