Monument and non-Monument: concrete heritage of the post-war era
    11-12 June 2021 | Kaunas (Lithuania)

The Workshop

WHEN: 11th-12th June 2021

WHERE: Online9th Forth Museum Kaunas, Lithuania

About the Workshop

Formidable solids of exposed concrete and monotonous, utilitarian shapes of social housing have become one of the most recognizable and universal elements of post-war architectural language. Regardless of the different political systems, geographic conditions or local aesthetic traditions an architectural style now commonly referred to as “brutalism” (derived from the  French “béton brut” or “raw concrete”) became a dominant expression of our shared architectural  heritage and an inseparable part of many cities around the world.

In Eastern European countries la rge – scale mikrora yons vividly embody the pragmatic dimension of the socialism project. On the other hand, there was a striking part of Soviet modernism that was demonstratively irrational, focused not on a standardized function, but on a breath-taking e motion. A similar duality appeared in Western societies.

Despite specific aesthetic values many of these buildings are seen by some as not fitting into the contemporary context. Even though the rising interest around the architecture of brutalism is growing, these monuments and buildings are too often being demolished, unrecognizably altered or simply left to deteriorate. ICOMOS ISC20C initiates this lnnovaConcrete workshop as a field for debate whether these structures/monuments, apartment buildings or other functional types can and should remain for future generations as a relevant part of our history.


First Day –  Friday June 11th | From 2.00 to 7.00 pm (CEST)

2:00 pm► Opening Workshop >>

María J. Mosquera:UCA University of Cadiz, InnovaConcrete Project Coordinator

Gunny Harboe: ICOMOS ISC20C

Marius Peciulis:  Director of the 9th Forth Museum

2:30 pm ► InnovaConcrete Update

María Mosquera: University of Cadiz, InnovaConcrete Project Coordinator

3:00 pm► Keynote Speaker >>

Catherine Croft:  20th Century Society
3:45 pm ► 100 of the 20 Century Concrete Heritage>>

Susana Landrove: DOCOMOMO lbérico

4:15 pm ► Benchmark Document Guidelines for Conservation of 20 Century Concrete Heritage >>

Kyle Normandin | Stefania Landi 

4:45 pm► BREAK

5:00 pm► The Study Cases in InnovaConcrete

Gunny Harboe: ISC20C-ICOMOS

5:15 pm ► El lnstituto Torroja, by Eduardo Torroja, Madrid, Spain >> | Part 2 >>

The Work of Eduardo Torroja and the Modem Architecture

María Teresa Bianco  

5:30 pm ► The Zarzuela Hipodrome, by Eduardo Torroja, Arniches y Dom1nguez, in Madrid, Spain >>

Jerónimo, Junquera 

5:45 pm ► El Elogio del Horizonte, by Eduardo Chillida, in Gijon, Spain >>

The Work of Eduardo Chillida and Concrete Sculpture & Art  Heritage

Luis Chillida 

6:00 pm ► Flaminio Stadium, by Pier Luigi and Antonio Nervi, in Rome, ltaly >>

The Concrete Architecture in the Mediterranean Areas and the Work of Pier Luigi Nervi

Gabriella di Carlo 

6.15 pm ► The Centennial Hall, in Wroclau, Poland >>

Protection of the  Concrete Heritage from the  Beginning of the 20th Century

Krzysztof Raszczuk 

6.30 pm► The Train Station, in Warsow, Poland >>

Post-War Concrete-Based Cultural Heritage in Central and Eastern Europe

Blazej Ciarkowski 

6.45 pm► The Fallen Monuments, in Torricella  Peligna, Abruzzo, ltaly >>

Maria Isabella Pierigè 

7:00 pm► Conclusions of the First Day

Vaidas Petrulis

Second Day – Saturday June 12th | From 2.00 to 6.00 pm (CEST)

2.00 pm► Opening of the Workshop >>

2.10 pm ► Kaunas Case Study >>

Vaidas Petrulis: the History of the 9th Fort Museum;

Marius Peciulis: Director of the 9th Fort;

David Lopez: INES (investigation and treatments).

3.15 pm ► Round Table Cases Studies >>

During these three years in which we have developed the lnnovaConcrete project, seven workshops have been held, which, developed around different themes, have all revolved around a common issue: concrete heritage in the twentieth century.

This heritage, in general, are not well considered, very abandoned and poorly preserved. As far as its protection is concerned, it has needed a greater effort, making it known, generating its consideration and studying the best systems and techniques for its conservation. All this, around very different typologies, different built systems, located in varied climates and with very different cultural meanings, but all of them with two issues in common: concrete and its heritage value.

This last workshop held in Kaunas, gives us the opportunity to share the results of all of them and perhaps draw some important conclusion to include in the Benchmark that is being prepared around the criteria of conservation of the concrete heritage of the 20th century.

Moderator – Gunny Harboe

Maria Teresa Bianco; Jerónimo Junquera; Luis Chillida; Gabriella di Carlo; Krzysztof Raszczuk; Blazej Ciarkowski; Maria Isabella Pierigè; Marius Peciulis

4:15 pm ► Reinforced concrete monuments: intentions and consequences >>

Generally , the reinforced concrete structures con be regarded as a symbol representing 20th century architecture. However, many of the most important examples of reinforced concrete of the 20th century were specifically constructed as symbols. These include museums and monuments of political significance, buildings to commemorate various anniversaries and other places of ideological meaning. Today these monuments are being perceived as a source for multifaceted narratives. On the one hand, they perfectly represent the aesthetic potential of reinforced concrete as a material. On the other hand, close links with political ideologies frequently provoke harsh public reactions. As a result, many of these monuments have been destroyed, relocated or simply abandoned in recent decades. The aim of the session is to present these monuments as a specific phenomenon of 20th-century architecture.

Moderator – Kyle Normandin

Jörg Haspel: ICOMOS Germany;

Sigrid Brandt:  Universitat Salzburg , Austria;

Sandra Uskokovic: University of Dubrovnik, Croatia;

Panel discussion: Vaidas Petrulis, Sigrid Brandt, Jörg Haspel, Sandra Uskokovic

5.15 pm ► Conservation strategies and reuse of concrete heritage >>

Reinforced concrete represents strength and durability. Paradoxically,the survival of this architecture faces various economic, technological, and cultural challenges. Brutalist architecture is often perceived by the public as “ugly”. Some of the structures, and in particular the monuments, relate to the painful political post. Finally, monumental forms of concrete structures not always easy to adaptable to present needs. Evening discussion will concentrate on recent conservation and knowledge sharing initiatives on concrete architecture. Representatives of ongoing or recent projects will be invited to discuss the possible future scenarios for reinforced concrete architecture.

Moderator – Gunny Harboe

Antoine Wilmering: The Getty Foundation

Aušra Černauskiené: Vilnius Gediminas Technical University, Lithuania;

Barnabas Calder: University of Liverpool

Panel Discussion: Catherine Croft, Antoine Wilmering, Aušra Černauskiené, Barnabas Calder

6.00 pm►   Closing of the Workshop

Vaidas Petrulis, María J. Mosquera




Gunny Harboe ICOMOS | ISC20C