Sf sziget cover


Archtalent, an online architecture platform for Architects, in collaboration with Sziget, one of the largest music and cultural festivals in Europe, make an international call to design a temporary structure within the particular context of a music festival in the special city of Budapest in Hungary.

The aim is to use the current model of architectural competition to develop a new contest in terms of format and scope, which should be an opportunity to all emerging talent anywhere in the world to boost their potential in a real competition, and showcase their built project to an audience of thousand of people.


“Structures of Freedom” is a single stage competition with the objective of receiving ideas from all over the world for the development and construction of an ephemeral structure in a unique music festival like Sziget, under the following concepts: design, innovation, context, recyclability and sustainability.

The competition is open to architects under the age of 40, and participation can be both individual or in teams. Students can participate as part of a team, with the sole condition that at least one member of the team is a graduate architect under the age of 40.

We look for proposals committed to innovation while reaffirming the values ​​of the festival, which are much more than the music.

Sziget Festival

Sziget festival is one of the largest music and cultural festivals in Europe, its first edition took place in 1993 and next August will celebrate its 25th anniversary. It is held every August in northern Budapest, Hungary, on Óbudai-sziget ("Old Buda Island"), a leafy 108-hectare (266-acre) island on the Danube. More than 1,000 performances take place each year.

The week-long festival has grown from a relatively low-profile student event in 1993 to become one of the prominent European rock festivals, with about half of all visitors coming from outside Hungary, especially from Western Europe

By 1997 total attendance surpassed the 250,000 mark, reaching an all-time peak in 2016 with 496,000 visitors from 95 countries (the daily capacity having been raised to 90,000). It is now being increasingly labeled as a European alternative to the Burning Man festival due to its unique features ("an electronically amplified, warped amusement park that has nothing to do with reality").

In 2012, Sziget was ranked one of the 5 best festivals in Europe by The Independent. The festival is a two times winner at the European Festivals Awards in the category Best Major European Festival and has been multiple awarded in other categories.

The Competition

Archtalent and Sziget festival make an international call searching new ideas for the design of an ephemeral structure as a gathering place for people to meet and rest while enjoying of the interaction of music, art and the magnetic and historic context of the Festival and the island.  

The designed space should serve also as protection. Must be an iconic oasis for the warm and sunny weather of Budapest in August, where comfort, in terms of design and sustainability, will be guaranteed.

We propose facing the architectural theme from the premise of designing a landmark for the festival, harboring a free and flexible structure, an "object that works like a lamp or patio” that locates, guides and attracts the people inside the festival.

Interactive or participatory architecture blurs the lines between the architect, the architecture, and people engaging with the proposal. We look for proposals that encourages people to engage, experiment, and explore their environment. Participant’s experience of the piece alters as he or she moves around it.

The competition pretend to be an explosion of creative energy. A celebration of participatory music, art and culture where everything is possible.


The competition is open to architects under the age of 40 from all over the world, and participation can be both individual or in teams, where teams should be up to 3 people.

Architecture students can participate as part of a team with the sole condition that at least one member is a graduate architect under the age of 40.

Under no circumstance, members of one team are allowed to participate with a different team and each entrant or team may submit only one proposal.


First-place prize:

  • 3,000 € 
  • Construction 
  • Publication in our channels and media partners.
  • VIP tickets to attend the festival for every team member.
  • One week accommodation in the campsite for every team member during the festival.

Runner-up prize (2nd and 3rd):

  • Publication in our channels and media partners.
  • VIP tickets to attend the festival for every team member
  • One week accommodation in the campsite for every team member during the festival.

Finalists (4th to 10th):

  • Publication in our channels and media partners.


  • Competition launch: Tuesday February 28, 2017
  • Early registration deadline: Up to Tuesday, March 21, 2017, 11:59:59PM GMT
  • Standard registration deadline: Up to Tuesday, April 25, 2017, 11:59:59PM GMT
  • Advanced registration deadline: Up to Monday, May 22, 2017, 11:59:59PM GMT
  • Submissions deadline: Up to Tuesday, May 23, 2017, 11:59:59PM GMT
  • Jury review: May 24 to June 7, 2017
  • Public announcement of winner: Friday, June 9, 2017
  • Installation buildout: July 31 to August 8, 2017
  • Exhibition dates: August 9 to August 16, 2017

Registration Fees

  • Early Registration: 40.00€ (Individuals) / 60.00€ (Teams) 
  • Standard Registration: 50.00€ (Individuals) / 80.00€ (Teams) 
  • Late Registration: 60.00€ (Individuals) / 100.00€ (Teams) 

Teams up to 3 people.

Registration and payment can only be made through Archtalent website.



Registered participants in the competition may submit their questions in English language by email to: structuresoffreedom@archtalent.com

1. Regarding questions of the brief, shall we direct these questions to Archtalent or to a contact from the Sziget festival?

All communications with the festival must be through Archtalent, so if you have any question, please send them via email to: structuresoffreedom@archtalent.com, we will respond as soon as possible.

2. Should delivery cost of the material be factored into the budget?

Yes, it should be part of the budget.

3. Are labour costs to be included in the 15,000 budget? 

Yes, labour costs should be part of the budget.

4. Is there a team there on site? If so, how skilled are they? 

There is no team on site. Number of person assembling the proposal, and skills needed should be included in the budget. Depending on the nature of the project itself, we will select a construction company who guarantees the right development of the proposal.

5. What sort of festival construction equipment are available?

Construction equipment such as cranes, scaffoldings, scissor lift, etc…would be available if really needed.

6. Can festival audio-visual equipment be lent to pavilion from festival organizers?

No, it should be part of the budget.

7. Can we cite websites such as Alibaba? 

No, this is not allowed, although we encourage teams to look for collaborations with companies who are able to supply some elements important for the project to minimize costs. 

8. Shall we assume that the site will have access to potable water supply?

Yes, there will be access to potable water supply.

9. If special installation equipment is required, does that have to be included in the 15k budget? 

Yes, everything must be part of the budget, with the sole exception of construction equipment such as cranes, scaffoldings, scissor lift, etc…which would be available if really needed. 

10. Can the structure be well secured to the ground provided it is not leaving a permanent mark on the ground?

Structures can be fixed to the ground, but should not require modifying the soil beyond what is necessary to ensure the feasibility and safety of the project.

Although it is necessary taking into account the principle of leave no trace or mark in the park, there is a certain degree of freedom, because once the festival ends, the organization pay special attention in recovering the original state of the island.

11. How is it possible to reliably price recycled materials, especially if their availability by region or time of year fluctuates wildly? 

We understand that some parts of the budget will be orientative, since we assume that with some elements it is impossible to be 100% accurate.

12. What information should include the Entry Form file?

The Entry Form should be a .PDF file and must include the category (Architect or Architecture student), name, age, email, phone number, nationality, city of residence and university of studies of every team member.

13. Could an industrial design student be part of a team?

No, the competition is this time only open to architects and architecture students.

14. I understand that the questions could be asked until Friday, April 7 but what happen if I have a question?

We have deleted that deadline and we will respond questions until the last day.

15. Regarding the project total budget, the 15.000 euros include the VAT or not?

Proposals can not exceed 15.000 € before adding VAT. So, if the total budget without VAT is 15.000 €, after adding VAT (for example 27%) the final budget will be 19.050 €, which will be OK.

16. The use of PayPal was stopped last years in Turkey, is there any other option you can offer for the payment?

The entire registration process is automated, but in special cases registration fee can be paid through bank transfer. Email us to: structuresoffreedom@archtalent.com to see further details.

17. Should the pavillion be covered or uncovered in order to be protected by the sunlight ?

It is not mandatory, there is freedom to design as long as comfort is guaranteed. 

18. Can we assume that the pavilion will be placed near trees?

For sure there will be trees near the project, but we can not know how far or near since we will not know the precise location of the project in the island until July.

19. Can we link the pavilion to an existing electricity system or should we include a generator into the program?

Yes, the festival will provide electricity if it is necessary for the project, so there is no need to include the generator.

20. should we take in consideration national companies for the purchase and transport  of the building materials? Is there any company that already provides material to the festival?

Yes, everything must be part of the budget with the sole exception of construction equipment such as cranes, scaffoldings, scissor lift, etc…

21. In the FAQ it is mentioned that labour cost should be included in the budget. Can you provide the approximate cost per man per hour available at the Sziget?

According to the National Statistics Office of Hungary (www.ksh.hu), regarding labor costs and wages in 2015:

The gross average wage was 248,000 forinthes (about 800 euros), while the average net wage was 162,000 Ft (524 euros) 111,500 Ft (360 euros) for unskilled workers and 219,000 Ft (707 euros) for skilled workers. The Hungarian minimum wage for 2016 was set at 111,000 Ft (355 euros) for unskilled workers and 129,000 Ft (412 euros) for skilled workers. 

The exchange rate to be taken into account has been 309.90 HUF / EURO (annual average for the year 2015).

22. What area of the room is there a link to the terrain? 

The intervening space must have a floor area of nor more than 100m2 and not less than 50m2. Height is not limited.

23. Is there any grief for the height of the pavilion?

The project will be located somewhere on the island, but until July we will not know the exact location. You have to assume flat ground covered with grass.

24. If part of the project is based on some sort of software/hardware tools [e.g. Arduino], should the development of the software be factored as some sort of cost in the budget or should it be considered as a part of the design in itself to be delivered by the project team along with construction drawings?

If part of the project is based on software/hardware tools, the development should be considered as part of the budget.

25. Is there a minimum budget limit which should be exceeded by the total cost of the proposal? Is it fine if the total cost of the project is well inferior than the 15k budget?

There is no minimum budget.

26. Regarding the maximum area of 100m², in case the pavilion is made up of separate parts, does it refer to the surface occupied by the project itself excluding spaces found in between the different parts or should it be considered as the lot area occupied by the pavilion? 

The 100m² are refer to the surface occupied by the project itself. We do not know the exact location of the project, but there will be enough space.

27. Our structure uses scaffolding similar to the ones in the park. We read that the construction equipment would be available if needed, could we use them for the structure and not include them in the overall cost? We don't need that many. 

There will be construction equipment available but only for the construction process. If your design is based on scaffoldings, this should be part of the budget.

28. We understand that the exact location in the park hasn't been defined yet. We would want the design of our structure to interact with a tree. is it possible to make the tree part of our proposal? 

We understand the problem with the exact location but as we do not know it, we can not guarantee the interaction of the project with an existing tree. 

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