A Simplistically Styled House By Heinrich Tessenow

2517 words - 10 pages

My aim is to investigate why Tessenow chooses to use such methods of design which are simplistic in style for his own house and how it relates to his other designs in terms of size and dimensions. I would like to see how Tessenow’s work compares to that of other European architects, if there any links, or if Tessenow followed or started any trends in German architecture. But primarily i will focus on the use of space and seeing whether there is a barrier between public and private space or not. I would like to explore how the building affects the user, whether it possesses emotional interfaces, which in turn influence people differently.
Heinrich Tessenow was born in 1876 and died in 1950, he was a German architect, a professor and an urban planner, and worked during the time of the Weimar Republic. The Weimar Republic was the parliament in Germany which was soon superseded by the German Reich. This republic lasted fourteen years. Tessenow is considered to be one of the most important personalities in German architecture during the Weimar Period. According to one of Tessenow’s apprentice’s, Heinrich was renowned for saying: ‘...The simplest form is not always the best, but the best is always simple...’ (Refer to bibliography)
Tessenow designed this house for himself and his lady friend who was a music teacher, Chilla Schlichter in 1930.The external elevations of the house are venaculer in design as the house show traits which echo back to themes which had been developed within the German quarter, Hellerau. The house itself is moderately small and is based on a cubic shape, with a limited amount of openings in the walls; the first floor space is within the roof space, meaning lowered ceilings and reduced living space. Consequently a large majority of the house, is used as storage space, as Tessenow designed with functionality in mind. For instance Tessenow wanted the ground floor to be used as served space, whereas the first floor is used as servant space.
Other buildings and designs by Heinrich Tessenow follow similar design traits, looking at his designs before and after the house in Zehlendorf, one can see that Tessenow uses a design which acts as a template for many of his other works. These design features being: a cube then a triangular elevation above the square shape, more often than not this triangular shape is usually a right angled triangle, which when looking at elevations appears to be resting on top of the cubic shape. This design feature is idicular. For instance if you told a child to draw a house, his psychological mind would draw a square with a hypotenuse based triangle on top; this helps to prove the point that designs by Tessenow are simplistic.
One example of this can be found in (1). This building in Hellerau was designed to be used as a public space. To begin with if one was to bisect a line through the middle of both buildings, one would achieve perfect symmetry. Referring to the image one can see that the left hand...

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