KÉK (Hungarian Contemporary Architecture Centre) is an independent professional institution focusing on architecture, built environment, urban development and their relation to the communities. Due to our unique knowledge, and experience of a decade and a half, and their extended partnership network, KÉK plays a determining role in today’s Central-European architecture culture.
Our cultural programs interpret the architecture and the mechanisms of the city, and our professional work actively contributes to the innovative improvement thereof. Our forte lies in the combination of wide-range participation, complex analysis and innovative content development, simultaneously engaging the professional fields of design, research, and culture.
KÉK is, among others, organizing exhibitions, conferences, festivals, trainings, thematic guided tours, professional and public events. Furthermore, we pursue long-term activities such as operating community gardens, analyzing and developing urban districts with the involvement of local communities, as well as creating and implementing thematic programs of urban development with our partners involving several cities. The experts of KÉK participate in an advisory role in institutional and urban development programs and architectural projects. Besides hosting our public and professional activities, our headquarters function as a co-working space, event venue, and gallery, where we conduct our training, internship, and mentoring programs.
Vision: Redifining the cultural and social role of architecture and raising the international profile of contemporary Hungarian architecture and architects.
Mission: Running an independent and open centre that promotes architectural education, awareness and innovation among multidisciplinary professionals and the general public.
Objectives: Initiating dialogue about architecture, the city and its culture both within the profession and beyond; promoting contemporary Hungarian architecture at international platforms; facilitating integration between architecture and other related disciplines; supporting relevant initiatives, providing up to date and relevant professional advice and supporting widespread architectural education.
KÉK was founded in 2006 by young architects who are still supporting the organisation as members of its Advisory Board.
Bárdossy Krisztina · Boda Judit · Bodonyi Panni · Bujdosó Attila · Bürger Nóra · Csaba Tímea · Dabóczy Orsi · Deigner Ágnes · Dékény Tibor · Evva Ambrus · Farkas Zsófi · Fazekas Ildikó · Fehér Gábor · Ferenczi Edit · Finta Sándor · Göbl Gabi · Guld Andrea · Gyabronka Péter · Hatvani Ádám · Hennel Zsófia · Horváth Bálint · Horváth Henrietta · Horváth Máté · Horváth Zsuzsanna · Huszár Daniella · Huszthy Zita · Jeczkó Mercédesz · Károlyi Zsuzsa · Keresztes István · Kiss Ágnes · Kiss Dorottya · Kiss Gergely · Kiss Ida · Kovács Gergely · Kőmíves Kata · Libárdi Julianna · Major Virág · Nagy Gabi · Naszádi Sára · Németh Nóra · Oravecz Júlia · Orosz Ágoston · Orosz Sára · Péteri Zsolt · Pongor Soma · Pongrácz Barbara · Schanz Judit · Schmidt Márti · Schum Gergő · Sipos Andrea · Somlyódy Nóra · Szabó Gyöngyvér · Szakál Anna · Szamos Bianka · Székács Péter · Szutor Bernadette · Szűcs Petra · Szücs-Tassy Karina · Tamási Miklós · Tornyászki Éva · Tóth Kati · Turai Balázs · Ungár Fanni · Vadász Orsolya · Varga Péter István · Vass Juli · Wanderka Éva · Weber Zsófi · Zimborás Gábor and many more
KÉK has been engaged in examining the latest methods, formats and possibilities of urban regeneration for almost a decade. Our research programs, advisory services and development projects enable us to involve a growing network of stakeholders in rethinking our urban neighborhoods. Our activities, ranging from the systematic reuse of vacant or underused parcels and properties through suburban community development to commercial regeneration, provide new solutions for new urban problems.
One of the most important challenges of our age is to integrate technological innovation into the architectural and planning practice in a way that contributes to a sustainable and resilient society and environment instead of feeding self-serving developments. KÉK helps this process with professional events, exhibitions and research, always seeking to bring together designers and engineers with decision-makers and the broader public.
As declared in our founding manifesto, KÉK is strongly committed to bring more transparency into decision-making related to architecture and planning. Our public debates, publications, campaigns and competition formats are all conceived to help professionals and the broader public in taking positions, articulating opinions and participating at debates about the city.
One of KÉK’s most important missions is to make issues of contemporary architecture, planning and design accessible and comprehensible to the broader public, and to promote a community-based approach in urban policies. Through our festivals, cultural events, lecture series, tour guides and urban walks, we invite thousands of citizens to experience the city in new, more involved ways.
KÉK started its activity in 2006 with opening its cultural premises in Budapest, Nefelejcs street in a former warehouse in the backyard of a museum. The warehouse was in bad shape unused for decades and needed significant improvements to accommodate events and the public. The building was a catalyst in KÉK’s story: it did not only give form to the organization but also determined many of its activities, helping the construction of its identity. By opening a backyard to the local street network and turning it into a lively and accessible space, KÉK increased visibility for the area to a city-wide audience.
The first phase of KÉK’s operations in Nefelejcs street ended in 2008 when the centre moved to the very heart of the city into an office building managed by ORCO Property Group. The 7-storey, 6000m2 downtown building offered very different possibilities. By using the façade and roof for exhibitions and screenings, KÉK attempted to bring the building temporarily back into the public realm. This experiment for temporary use ended in the second hald of 2008.
Between 2008 and 2015 KÉK carried out its programmes at various sites without a permanent venue.
KÉK celebrated its 10th anniversary in 2016. Linked to this occasion, it has he moved to a permanent location, where it has opened its new multifunctional project space. To celebrate its 10th anniversary KÉK has released the first ever architecture beer, C10. In the same year, the Hungarian Intellectual Property Office recognised the centre's activities and its social impact by the Millennium Prize "as the decisive representative of Hungarian contemporary architecture, urbanism and conscious civic society."