The campus of the Eötvös Loránd University of Sciences is not only a nice piece of modern architecture: it also excels in functionality, a nice place to study and hang around between lectures.
There is hardly any other place that I know better than this since I spent more than ten years here. I started my studies in 1996 then I also worked as a journalist, graphic designer, and photographer for the university. I got several contracts to take photos of the place both inside and out. Despite the several hundred shots I fired here, a few years later, I am still curious and excited. I was really anxious to see how can I present this location with the Diana. I found myself mostly sticking to the 38mm super-wide objective: it is such a marvelous tool for a job like this.
The campus sits on the bank of the Danube, at the edge of the so-called Infopark: a huge place dedicated to office buildings and universities. The project is still not finished, there are still a lot of empty, unused place around the buildings.
The so-called Southern Block is the newer one. I can remember the times when only the basic structures stood and it was dubious whether it could ever be finished. After a long debate, the university finally got the necessary funds to complete it – it was high time since several departments needed the space. You can find the Institute for Biology, and several other institutes for various geographical studies here. It is a really interesting building from the outside, too: it is surrounded by walls, and many times, with small courtyards below ground level – this breaks the monotony of the walls and supplies the lower-level offices with light. The office I used to work in also had a window to a courtyard like this.
The interior is also worth mentioning: there are several atriums letting natural light to illuminate the place. At the corridors, many departments exhibit materials that aid in getting ready for the exams. There are also dedicated places to sit and learn together.
The Northern Block is even more complex. It was created through two steps: first, the Institute for Chemistry was erected; then it was expanded with another, even more modern-styled building. It’s main atrium is an extremely popular place in Budapest for balls and parties – the university even rents it to outside partners.
A small piece of trivia for the end: on the photo below, you can see the roads connecting the two blocks. Now all three of them are covered with stone panels. That was not always the case: the one running diagonally was covered only recently. Before that, there was a simple dirt path there in the grass, trod on by the students who usually decided not to walk around but crossed the space between the buildings the shortest way. It seems that university governance decided to follow the real needs of the university citizens instead of letting them drown in the mud on rainy days.
It was really interesting to return there. Although I work not far from here, I very rarely take time to stop. To look again at these walls with a photographer’s eye again was a really refreshing and nostalgic experience.
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