International School of Prague - Prague (Czech Rep.) - Praga (Repubblica Ceca)

A colourful education

In Prague, an institution of excellence educates the ruling elite of the future. The school's mission is reflected in the use of multicoloured ceramic surfaces with a strong personality and a high visual impact.
Donatella Bollani
Daniele Domenicali
Veronika Medkova
Maag CZ

The growing success of international schools, such as the one in Prague, testifies to the need to educate citizens and cosmopolitan elites who will be able to contribute in an open and proactive manner to all areas of society. Such is the case of the International School of Prague, one of the institutes of excellence in the English language at a European level, which in its new campus set on the quiet hills of the Czech capital instructs eight hundred students from various backgrounds and cultures from elementary classes through to their school-leaving diplomas. The low buildings with luminous, spacious interiors house the classrooms as well as a large number of facilities including a theatre, gyms, computer labs and a brightly-coloured cafe where students, parents and teachers can meet.
The well-established model espoused by the school combines a solid background culture with a strongly multidisciplinary training in the conviction that an all-round education must include not only intellectual activities but also physical, emotional and artistic development.
This institute stands out for its focus on a strong social and community vision in which interest in others, respect and mutual trust are key aspects. The aim is not to offer just a first-rate education but above all to develop brilliant young people who will be able to make a responsible contribution to the future of society.
This intention is reflected in the construction of the campus, where energy and enthusiasm radiate from the brightly coloured floors in the reception and common areas tiled with SistemA crystallised porcelain from Marazzi Tecnica.
SistemA is a highly versatile range of tiles, their surface layer resulting from an innovative chemical combination that combines high strength, three-dimensionality and chromatic expression that is difficult to achieve with ceramic products made from conventional raw materials.
The range forms an authentic ceramic system of coordinated and modular products which, thanks to the variety of sizes and extensive colour palette, offers almost unlimited creative and expressive potential to designers, as in the case of the International School of Prague. The product’s characteristics allowed all areas of the institute to be customised and given their own unique identity using the wide variety of colours available in the single format. This multiplicity of characteristics against a unified backdrop is the distinctive element of the work of the Prague architect Veronika Medkova, who while respecting the institutional mission of the school wanted to meet the needs of universality and modernity of the young people who spend many years of their lives here.
The tiles responded to aesthetic needs while meeting the performance requirements of high durability and ease of maintenance.
The tiling system boasts Ecolabel and LEED certification. Compliance with the American protocol testifies to the company’s commitment to minimising environmental impact, a sensitivity that translates into a coordinated series of interventions along the entire production chain: from the monitoring of mining activities and the morphological remediation and revegetation of the quarries to elimination of atmospheric emissions, from the recovery of waste to control of coloured pigments and oxides, from recycling of the process water to the constant monitoring of index of radioactivity. The commitment to safeguarding the environment before, during and after production has become an essential aspect of corporate culture, a major stimulus for innovation and research. It is the natural complement to an advanced, sophisticated approach to aesthetics that involves periodically reviewing products to ensure that they comply with trends.