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Exhibition

Way too modern

Hans Steineder, architect (1904-1976)

Wed 24.02.1999 – Mon 05.04.1999
Daily 10:00 AM - 07:00 PM, Wednesdays until 09:00 PM
Exhibition poster

Exhibition poster: Viel zu modern
© Architekturzentrum Wien, graphic design: Krieger|Sztatecsny, Büro für visuelle Gestaltung

opening: Tuesday, February 23, 1999, 7:00 p.m.

Hans Steineder’s designs for the Schulschwestern girls’ high school in Wels in 1927 were criticized as “too modern” by the client and initially rejected. Nonetheless, the Schulschwestern were pioneers in the architecture of Upper Austrian schools in the 30s.

As a student of Behrens, Steineder has command of the grand architectonic gesture. He grasps form as an architectonic quality on an equal footing with constructive and functional needs and achieves both a symbolism and plasticity in his buildings comparable to a “Baroque variant of the Stijly movement” (F. Achleitner).
Steineder’s office is confiscated by the Nazis in 1938, he moves from Linz to Vienna. Shortly thereafter, he breaks with his style, a change that is well illustrated by his conservationist work in the old city (Grinzing, Klosterneuburg, Melk, Kahlenbergdorf) or in his reconstruction of typical Austrian institutions such as Heuriger taverns and musicians’ monuments.

Opening:
Dietmar Steiner, Director Architekturzentrum Wien
Christine Lindinger, Curator

Open:
Daily from 10:00 a.m. – 7:00 p.m.

Guided tours through the exhibition:
Saturday, February 27, 1999, 3:00 p.m.
Saturday, March 13, 1999, 3:00 p.m.
Saturday, March 27, 1999, 3:00 p.m.

TuesdayArchitecture:
Tuesday, March 9, 1999, 7:00 p.m.
Tuesday, March 16, 1999, 7:00 p.m.

Information and Reservation:
Phone: ++41 1 522 31 15 Ext. 23 (Karin Wiederer)
E-Mail: press@azw.at

Press Release

Press Preview: Tuesday, February 23, 1999, 11:00 a.m.
Opening: Tuesday, February 23, 1999, 7:00 p.m.
Open: Daily 10:00 a.m. – 7:00 p.m.

TuesdayArchitecture:
01 – March 09, 1999, 7:00 p.m.
02 – March 16, 1999, 7:00 p.m.
 
Tours:
Saturday, February 27, 1999, 3:00 p.m.
Saturday, March 13, 1999, 3:00 p.m.
Saturday, March 27, 1999, 3:00 p.m.
 
Catalog:
The exhibition is accompanied by a catalog with an extensive list of Hans Steineder`s work (380.- ATS)
 
Press / Information:
Karin Wiederer
T ++43 1 522 31 15 Ext. 23
F ++43 1 522 31 17
E-Mail: press@azw.at

Way too modern
Hans Steineder’s design for the Schulschwestern girls’ high school in Wels in the year 1927 was criticized as “too modern” by the client and initially rejected. Nonetheless, the Schulschwestern were pioneers in the architecture of Upper Austrian schools in the 30s. Steineder (1904-1976) was promoted and appointed house architect of the holy order after 1927, and five schools were erected in 1927, in Ried 1928-30, in Wels 1928-37, in Hallein 1929, and in Attnang Puchheim in 1934. He also participated in numerous housing projects and competitions.

Behrens
As a student of Behrens, Steineder has command of the grand architectonic gesture. He grasps form as an architectonic quality on an equal footing with constructive and functional needs and achieves both a symbolism and plasticity in his buildings comparable to a “Baroque variant of the de Stijl movement” (F. Achleitner).

1938
Steineder’s office is confiscated by the Nazis, he moves from Linz to Vienna.

Post-war period
Steineder reemerges in the spring of 1946 as an independent architect, participates in the competition for ideas for a new design of the Danube Canal, and actively takes part in the reconstruction of Vienna. Almost in parallel, he goes through a change of style, which is also manifested in a lecture Steineder holds at the architects conference in August 1947: pioneers of the modern movement, such as Behrens, Corbusier, Fuller, and Wright, are attacked for their utilitarian functionalism, construction and function as premises for the creation of architecture are condemned. In contrast to the materialistic-physical-universal world view, Steineder advocates the recovery of the lost metaphysical feeling and the revival of specific Austrian cultural values. Steineder’s stance is well reflected in his cityscape conservation work (Grinzing, Klosterneuburg, Melk, Kahlenbergdorf) or by the reconstruction of typical Austrian institutions such as the Heurige (Austrian wine tavern) and sites to commemorate musicians.

This years main theme:
(A)way with Modernism ?

What is modern?
At the moment, in these years, architects are very modern again. But what is modern? Steel, glass, transparency, puristic forms? Did not post-modernism discover modernism? Some 20 years ago, collective remembering and discovering was taking place. Wagner, Loos, Hoffmann, Frank, etc. “the Wiener Moderne”, around the turn of the century, Jugendstil was a big seller. Art history and traders focused their research on the last turn of the century.

And then ?
The 20s, 30s, 40s, and 50s. Throughout all these decades, dramatic political changes, from the end of the 1st Republic, the Corporative State, the Nazi years, reconstruction. Fractures and continuities. The way with modernism or should it be better, considering all that happened, away with modernism?

TuesdayArchitecture
With four large retrospectives (Rudolf Schwarz, Hans Steineder, Erich Franz Leischner and Oswald Haerdtl) the Architekturzentrum Wien takes up and for the first time elaborates on the overlapping, continuities, and fractures within Austria’s history of architecture of the 20th century. The aim is to provide verbal opposition to the view focused on persons or on the “Forms of Architecture”. The discourse centers on the correlation between the change in general political conditions, local power structures, and aesthetic orientation.
The aim is to provide a retrospective reiteration before the turn of the millennium of the beginnings of architecture – for a better understanding of today.

Sponsored by:
Stadtplanung Wien, Wien Kultur, Kunst Bundeskanzleramt, Eternit, Schindler, Wiesner Hager, Zumtobel Staff

Biography

1904 Hans Steineder was born on February 27 in Linz.

1923 – 1926 Studies architecture at the Academy of Fine Arts; student of Peter Behrens

1926 Opens his own studio in Linz

1927 – 1934 The holy order of the “Schulschwestern” are his first client, followed by schools in Linz, Wels, Ried, Hallein, and Puchheim

1930 – 1931 Housing projects in Linz, single-family house in Grieskirchen

1931 – 1932 Kolping houses in Linz and Wels

1936 – 1938 Provincial transport authority in Linz, structural alterations for businesses, competitions

1938 His studio is confiscated by the NSDAP, moves to Vienna

1945 Reopens his studio in Vienna

1946 Awarded 1st prize with Mathäus Schlager in the Danube Canal competition

1947 Member of the Austrian state planners committee, great interest in the reconstruction of Austrian cultural heritage

1947 – 1975 Becomes member of various municipal advisory committees – Klosterneuburg, Melk, Grinzing, Mödling- advocates the conservation of old buildings and becomes a conservationist

1950 – 1961 Municipal buildings in Vienna, which he adapted to harmonize with the cityscape of the old city.

1971 Decoration of Honor in Silver of Vienna and professor title for his reconstruction of musician monuments

1976 Hans Steineder dies in Linz on March 29.