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Memorial to the Holocaust of the Roma and Sinti in Bohemia” has a winner

Prague, 9 th June 2020

The Museum of Romani Culture, s.p.o., is announcing the winner of the landscape-architectural competition for the form of the future memorial “Lety:  Memorial to the Holocaust of the Roma and Sinti in Bohemia”.

The winning design was submitted by Jan Sulzer and Lucie Vogelová from the terra florida v.o.s. studio and by Jan Světlík, Vojtěch Šedý and Filip Šefl of Ateliér Světlík. Roman Černohous and Petr Karlík also worked on the design.

Second place goes to the design by Jakub Kopec of the n-1 project, Klára Zahradníčková and Tomáš Džadoň Paly Paštika, Luboš Zbranek and Lynda Zein also worked on the design.

Third place goes to the Andrea Govi Architetto studio in Italy for a design by Karolina Chodura, Joanna Rozbroj and Marta Tomasiak.

The jury assessed the designs according to the architectural and artistic quality of their response to the challenge posed by the competition, taking into account the perspective of how the memorial would be situated in the landscape and also the degree to which the design expresses the subject matter and processes the topic of the memorial. A crucial factor in that regard is the degree of respect shown by the design for the culture of Bohemian Roma and Sinti.

“We are very glad that we have managed to choose a design that the jury agreed on practically unanimously,” said the director of the Museum of Romani Culture, Jana Horváthová. “The winning project was highly appreciated for its sensitive approach to the subject itself and to that of the surrounding landscape where the memorial will be situated, as well as for fulfilling the conditions of the economic suitability of the design.”

The assumed costs for building the memorial are, according to expert estimates, CZK 31.5 million [EUR 1.18 million] during the first phase of realization. The memorial will be financed by multiple sources, with most of the budget covered by the EEA and Norway Grants.

Now that the competition is completed, the next phase involves negotiations between the Museum of Romani Culture and the architects which will result in a contract on their collaboration and the creation of the project documentation for the implementation of the design.

The building of the memorial is connected to the demolition of the now-defunct industrial pig farm in that location, which was bought out by the state on the basis of  Decree no. 609 of the Government of the Czech Republic on 21 August 2017. Preparations to announce the tender for the demolition work have already begun and the demolition itself will begin in the second half of 2020. The opening of the new memorial to the public is planned for 2023.

The new exhibition and memorial are meant to honor the memory of the Romani and Sinti victims of the Holocaust, to commemorate, educate, inform and spark discussion of both the past and also the present social situation, and to cover the subjects of discrimination against minorities and of human rights. Detailed information about the competition and the background materials for it are available on the competition website in Czech and English:



The Museum of Romani Culture, in cooperation with ONPlan company, completed a three-month consultation phase of the preparation of an international two-stage landscape-architectural competition “Lety u Písku. The Memorial to the Holocaust of the Roma and Sinti in Bohemia”. The subject of the competition will be to look for the most suitable form of the memorial and the surrounding landscape.

Number of participants were involved in the preparation of the competition. Five working group meetings were held from April to June this year. In addition to the staff of the Museum of Romani Culture, survivors of the camp and experts from various professions were present. The aim of the working group was mainly the preparation of the documents for the landscape architectural competition.

In order to involve as wide range of participants as possible in the preparation of the competition, more than 100 representatives of the survivors of the Lety camp were invited to consult the outputs of the working groups. Representatives of the Roma groups who participated in the building of the memorial or the purchase of the pig farm, associations and initiatives that are committed to Roma and human rights issues, state or state-run organizations, professional and academic institutions, furthermore, project funding partners and non-Roma personalities openly supporting the Roma minority were also invited. The consultations took form of two consultation afternoons, which took place at the headquarters of the Ministry of Culture in Nostic Palace in May and June. The aim of these consultations was to present the present situation of the Lety Memorial, present the details of the intention to build the Memorial to the Holocaust of the Roma and Sinti in Bohemia and the basic contours of the landscape-architectural competition. During  both afternoon consultations, the attendees had the opportunity, after introductory presentations, to have individual consultations with representatives of the Museum of Romani Culture and Onplan company. Suggestions arising from the consultation afternoons included, among other things, the requirements for targeting er the memorial to the young generation, for presenting the stories of individuals, and respecting the culture of the Roma and the Sinti. Discussions about the need to include the names of camp victims in the memorial, and the fact that the list of victims is incomplete were held. The participants were also interested in details of the organization of the competition, or details of the demolition of the pig farm.

In connection with the preparation of the assignment of the competition, a meeting with the inhabitants of Lety and surrounding villages, took place in the social hall of the restaurant in Lety in May. The aim of the meeting was to present the present state of the memorial as well as ideas about its future but mainly  to find out the assessment of the current state of the territory by its inhabitants and to map the expectations and possible concerns of the locals. The locals mostly talked about the surrounding landscape, its picturesque nature, calm, well-preserved roads, but also places around the area connected with the history of the camp. With this also the fear that the competition designs will not respect the local landscape is associated. Of course, it was also said that the purchase of the pig farm, the funds for its demolition and, consequently, the realization of the monument, were several times higher than the budgets of local municipalities. The greatest benefit for us was the opening of the question of possible future cooperation with the municipality Lety, where it is possible to use the municipal social hall for cultural events associated with the activities of the Museum of Romani Culture in this place.

At the same time, individual negotiations are held with the owners of neighboring lands, representatives of neighboring municipalities, or some state administration bodies. Currently, the Museum of Romani Culture and external experts on Roma culture and history work  very intensively with ONplan company to finalize the competition conditions, enter the competition, prepare an accompanying publication and a web presentation. The basis for these documents is, apart from other things, the outputs of the working group or suggestions arising from consultation afternoons and meetings with residents of the surrounding municipalities. The assignment of the competition will be coordinated with the outputs of the next stage of archaeological research, which aims primarily to find the graves of the victims of the Lety camp.

We expect the competition to be announced in September this year, according to the preliminary schedule, the first phase of the competition will be closed in December 2019 and will be followed by the second phase, which will end with the announcement of the results of the competition in spring 2020.


The Museum of Romani Culture, in cooperation with ONplan company, has begun the preparation of an international two-round landscape – architectural competition  “Lety near Písek, the Memorial of the Roma and Sinti in Bohemia”. The subject of the competition will be the search for the optimal form of the memorial and the surrounding landscape.

“Too often we see the downsizing of the history of the camp in Lety and Hodonín near Kunštát and the general denial of the Roma and Sinti Holocaust. If we allow to forget, to deny this painful stage of our history and not learn from it, we open the possibility to repeat the same mistakes, repeat the same tragedies, ”said Jana Horváthová, Director of the Museum of Roma Culture. The mission of the memorial will be to commemorate the victims of the Lety Camp, the victims of the Roma and Sinti Holocaust from the former Protectorate, to preserve and commemorate the story of Camp Lety. The memorial must also educate and inform about the history of Roma and Sinti in Bohemia in the 20th century, explain the roots of hatred and discrimination and to stimulate the debate on the issue of human rights and improve mutual coexistence.

For the success of the competition and the fulfillment of the expectations, it is necessary to have a well-prepared assignment. Competing teams must understand the context, objectives and mission of the memorial, as well as the financial, technical and operational constraints. “Processing the theme of the memorial, defining its mission in detail and processing the contest is not easy. A wide range of participants are interested in the future of the memorial. They will all be informed about the preparation of the competition and its basic parameters. They will be involved in the creation of the assignment, ”said Petr Návrat from ONplan, the coordinator and future administrator of  the competition.

The assignment is being actively created in a working group composed primarily of experts from the Museum of Roma Culture and the representatives of the survivors. Experts in history, Roma experts, architects, gallerists and representatives of the Ministry of Culture are also members of this group.

Suggestions of local residents and the main project participants will form the basis for the processing of the assignement.  Current values and problems of the place, their needs and expectations, as well as any concerns about the future of the memorial will be discussed with the local residents at a meeting in May.

In May, a consultation afternoon with the participants acquainted with the current state of the territory, the planned mission of the memorial and the intention to announce the landscape-architectural competition  will take place.

The attendees will be able to discuss their questions on the presented information and express their expectations related to the future of the monument with the representatives of the Museum of Roma Culture and ONplan company. The main actors will be presented with a proposal to submit a competition prepared by the working group at the end of June.

The competition will be open, international and will have two-rounds – in the first round, international teams will present their concepts of the memorial solution from which the jury will select those that will advance to the second round.  In the second round, the selected contestants will present more detailed solutions from which the jury will select the best proposals.

All of this will be done in a strictly anonymous mode – the jury will be notified of the names of the authors of all proposals after the end of competiton.

The contract, which includes the completion of all stages of project documentation as well as the finalisation of the project, will be discussed  in accordance with the Public Procurement Act with the authors of the winning project. The competition will be announced in September this year. The first round of the competition will be closed by the end of the year, the second round should be closed and the results announced in April next year.