The Spirit of the Ancient World meets Industrialization

Following 1789 the French Revolution again wiped away the most important investors of arts and architecture -the church and aristocracy - and the new bourgeoisie was fascinated by the spirit of the ancient world again. German poets, architects and artists traveled to Italy to learn about the “romantic” spirit of the historic antique monuments.

From the technological point of view the industrialization brought new potentials and also new aesthetic perspectives.

Some of the most influential projects of the German Classicisms – Classic Period – have been designed by Karl Friedrich Schinkel in the early 19th century. His project Neue Wache was designed as a guardhouse for the troops of the Crown Prince of Prussia and is a leading example of German classicism. Its plan follows the shape of a Roman Castrum. Its main facade shows a classical portico of Doric columns.

Maybe his most important project the Academy of Architecture in Berlin became the prototype for the future exposed-brick buildings in Prussia. 1826 Schinkel had traveled to England to experience the far reaching effects of industrialization on architecture and urban design. He was not only interested to learn about the potential of new building techniques but also about the implication on aesthetics and society.

The extraordinary construction and building techniques of the Academy of Architecture were pointing the way to modern architecture in general. By international standards the Bauakademie was a monument of the Alte Sachlichkeit as the Bauhaus later became of the Neue Sachlichkeit.

Search for a German Identity

The philosophical idea of being based in tradition, or Klassizismus, placed its focus on the ancient worlds of Greece and Rome and this allowed architects to adapt and repeat all variations of architectural styles from those periods throughout the 19th century. The indiscriminate use of styles of the Historism and Ecclecticism period in Germany was soon accompanied by the search of German identity in architecture. This search for identity in arts and architecture was enhanced by the political efforts to form one German Empire out of the existing 39 states. For many Germans the answer to identity was the rebirth of the Gothic style as Neo-Gothic style. The completion of the Gothic Style Cathedral in Cologne more than 600 years after its groundbreaking became one of the most important symbols for the rebirth of German identity during that period.

Empire Style

When Napoleon Bonaparte became ruler of Germany in 1806 he brought the Empire style to the region. Germany and Austria retained close stylistic links with France, as many German craftsmen trained and worked in Paris, and became familiar with the Empire style. The grand, Classical motifs used in Empire style furniture, including eagles, mythical creatures, wreaths, and columns, combined with military-style bronze mounts and details, epitomized Napoleon's victories and celebrated his triumphs.


lt was the Bonapartes themselves who really made Empire furniture fashionable in Germany. The Emperor's brother, Jeröme Bonaparte, became King of Westphalia in 1810, and he furnished the Schloss Wilhelmshöhe with Empire-style pieces. These included pieces ordered from Georges Jacob-Desmalter and an imposing desk which was decorated with marble reliefs designed by Friedrich Wichmann. In 1806, Napoleon had a suite of Empire furniture made for his Residenz at Würzburg, Franconia. These pieces were inspired by the work of French architects Percier and Fontaine, whose work Napoleon favoured. Their 1801 pattern book, Recueil de decorations interieurs comprenant taut ce qui a rapport a l'ameublement, was well received and highly influential in Germany, inspiring local craftsmen to produce their own publications.

Viennese Secrétaire - c.1807
Viennese Guéridon - c.1810
North German Commode - Early 19th C.
Austrian Cherry Wood Table - c.1810
Beechwood Chair - c.1818


 German furniture was often larger and grander than its French Empire equivalents. Locally-produced pieces tended to have heavy columns and be rigidly symmetrical.

Empire furniture was predominantly a style for the nobility and was soon adopted by the rulers of the monarchies and princedom that made up the German Confederation after the Vienna Congress in 1815. These rulers showed off their power by building new castles or by lavishly refurbishing existing ones, and the exuberant interiors of the palaces were designed in the Empire style.

Anterooms and throne rooms were furnished with gilded Empire pieces. Gifted court cabinet-makers produced various ensembles with matching sofa tables and console tables based on French designs or adapted from the fashion magazines that were popular at the time. Private rooms were furnished with mahogany pieces ornamented with gilt-bronze mounts. Decorative motif were influenced by those of ancient Egypt.

eating furniture was also directly inspired by the designs of the ancient world. The influence of the Greek Klismos chair, for example, can be seen in the chairs designed by Leo von Klenze, who worked for the Bavarian King Ludwig I in Munich and whose neoclassical buildings form much of the city of Munich today.


Vienna was a leading centre for the production of furniture.  lt was here that some of the most inventive designs were developed, including the lyre-secretaire, which often took on unusual shapes. Unlike the designers and craftsmen working in the German states, Viennese designers favored the striking contrast of ebonized wood and gilt bronze and created finely cast and chased gilt bronze mounts that equalled the work of French craftsmen.

One of the most gifted Viennese cabinet-makers was Josef Ulrich Danhauser. He ran the first Viennese furniture manufacturers, from 1804 until his death in 1829, and made his name by decorating his furniture with wood paste moulded to look like expensive bronzes.

Biedermeier Style

THE TERM "BIEDERMEIER" covers the wide spectrum of simple, Classical, handcrafted, funclional fumiture made between 1805 and 1850, which was made at the same time as fumiture in the Empire style. While the nobility fumished their formal rooms with Empire furniture, the more private parts of their houses and mansions were furnished in the Biedermeier style, which was favoured by the wealthy middle classes in Germany, Austria, Switzerland, and Scandinavia.

Political unrest in the German states in the early 19th century created a general feeling of uncertainty and increasing poverty. As a result, people withdrew into the privacy of their own homes, and the middle classes in particular began to take an increasing interest in fumishings.


Biedermeier fumiture typically had straight lines and lacked decorative carvings. Motifs inspired by Classical designs, such as columns, gables, egg and dart, and bead and reel details were all popular. From about 1830, designs incorporated scrolled forms: chairs often had splayed legs, sofas had arched backs, and moulded comices were used as omament for writing cabinets.


The most fashionable woods for Biedermeier furniture were mahogany, which was imported and, therefore, rather too expensive for this essentially middle-class style, and also less costly local woods such as walnut, cherry, pear, birch, and ash, combined with dark elm and thuyawood. The grain of the wood was the most important decorative feature. The natural grain of the veneer was emphasized with various pyramidal or fountain-like shapes. Root veneers of acorn, burr­walnut, and elm were also popular because of their varied colour and attractive markings. Darker woods were frequently used as borders around diamond-shaped keyholes, block feet, or comices.

Writing Cabinet - c.1820
Dining Table - c.1830
Walnut Veneered Commode - 1820-30
Wall Mirror - 1820-30
Glazed Cabinet - c.1820
Sofa - c.1825
Dining Chairs - 1820-1830


Biedermeier interiors were modestly furnished, and the emphasis was on practicality and comfort, rather than decoration. The furniture was moderate in size, rounded in shape, comfortable, and homely.

Many pieces had a counterpart -another piece that was similar in size - to balance the furnishing of the room. The secretaire with a fall front and the blender, which looked like an imitation secretaire, but was designed for use as a linen press or wardrobe, were very common styles.

An overall colour scheme was a prominent feature of Biedermeier interiors and frequently light-coloured upholstery, curtains, and woods were chosen to create a homely interior with an integrated sense of design.

The advances in manufacturing that occurred during this period did not have much impact until the second half of the century, so early Biedermeier furniture was visibly hand-made. Upholstery was generally flat and square, made of silk or horsehair, and wooden surfaces were simply planed and polished with oil.

By the mid 19th century, the style was seen as comfortable but rather dowdy, and was given the name Biedermeier, a satirical term that meant "the decent common man". The name was originally used in a German publication for a fictional middle­class character, and was not intended to be particularly flattering.

The style gradually began to decline in popularity and it was only at the beginning of the 20th century that this negative evaluation began to fade, and Biedermeier-style furniture once again became much sought after. This led in turn to the style being widely copied.

Rococo Revival Style

THE GERMAN-SPEAKING world developed its own style years before the modern German state took shape. Although the Biedermeier style had evolved from the Neoclassical movement, particularly the Empire look that emerged from Napoleonic France, it was distinctly Germanic. Its popularity was such that Biedermeier furniture never quite disappeared in the 19th century and a number of popular revivals occurred, particularly in the 1860s. At the same time, Germany and Austria embraced the same eclectic historicism that was popular throughout Europe during the mid 19th century.

The Rococo revival was met with particular favour in Vienna, a city whose conservative nature was such that the court had never relinquished the original Germanic Rokoko of the 18th century, and so there was a seamless progression to the revival style. New processes and technologies ushered in by the Industrial Revolution made it possible to recreate Rococo forms from published patterns at a fraction of the original cost and in less time, making them accessible to a wider market. Machines cut much finer veneers and carved Rococo ornament for application to carcases constructed from local woods.

One of the pinnacles of the Rococo-revival style was the refurbishment of the Palais Liechtenstein in Vienna, which made a lasting impression on public taste. Michael Thonet, who assisted Peter Hubert Desvignes in this mammoth task between 1837 and 1849, went on to revolutionize the furniture industry in his adopted Austria with his mass-produced bentwood furniture.

Other accomplished masters included Anton Pössenbacher, whose lavish carved and embroidered chairs for King Ludwig II represent the zenith of Bavarian Rococo.

Reworking of historical styles was characterislic of German and Austrian fumiture design at this time. The same Gothic, Rococo, and Renaissance revivals that informed fumiture design in Paris and London diffused through the continent far more quickly after the development of an integrated rail network in the mid 19th century After the eventual unification of the German states under Bismarck in 1871, there was a general reappraisal of the roots of German culture, creating a fusion of traditional vemacular design with these wider European trends.

Just as the United Stares embraced the Neo-Renaissance style after winning their independence from Britain, German designers developed a particular affinity for the style following the Franco-Prussian war in 1871. Known as the Gründerzeit, this style continued to be popular into the 20th century, remaining fashionable in some circles in parallel with the more radical Jugendstil.

Beautiful and, above all, representative furniture are the hallmarks of that era, which has become known in Germany as the "Gründerzeit". In the period of about 1840 to 1873, due to the advent of industrialization, Germany experienced an economic boom which helped for the first time broader sections of the population to prosper. This epoch of growth ended in 1873 with the first major stock market crash, The Panic of 1873.

The German Gothic revival, a lighter and fussier aesthetic than its British counterpart, often featured boullework - a product of Louis XIV's France rather than of the medieval period. The German version of the Gothic style was more elaborate, making use of multiple colours where the original French version had been predominantly monochrome. A carved oak bookcase designed in Gothic style by Austrian cabinet-makers Bemardo de Bernardis (1808-68) and Joseph Cremer (1808-71) was displayed at the Crystal Palace exhibition in 1851, and afterwards it was presented to Queen Victoria by Emperor Franz Josef.

Press Cupboard - Late 19thc.
Games Table - 1850-60
Dining Table - c1840
Dining Tabletop - c1840

Rundbogenstil - Round Arch Style

The style was the deliberate creation of German architects seeking a German national style of architecture, particularly Heinrich Hübsch (1795–1863). It emerged in Germany as a response to and reaction against the neo-Gothic style that had come to the fore in the late 18th and early 19th centuries. By adopting the smooth facade of late antique and medieval church architecture, it aimed to extend and develop the noble simplicity and quiet grandeur of neo-classicism, while moving in a direction more suited to the rise of industrialism and the emergence of German nationalism. Hallmarks of the style, in addition to the rounded arches from which it takes its name, include "eyebrows" over the windows and inverted crenelation under the eaves.

Rundbogenstil was employed for a number of railway stations, including those in Karlsruhe, Leipzig, Munich, Tübingen, and Völklingen. These were typically "first generation" stations (built between 1835 and 1870); some were razed to be replaced by larger buildings. Those in Tübingen and Völklingen are still extant, while the Bayerischer Bahnhof in Leipzig is partially preserved.

Rundbogenstil was also widely employed in synagogue architecture. The first in this style was the Kassel Synagogue designed by Heinrich Hübsch with Albrecht Rosengarten, built in the latter's native city Kassel, Hesse-Kassel, in 1839. An early example in the United States is the Gates of Heaven Synagogue in Madison, Wisconsin, built in 1863 and designed by August Kutzbock, an immigrant from Bremen, Germany. Kutzbock also (co)designed secular buildings employing Rundbogenstil, such as the Carrie Pierce House (1857) in Madison. It was restored in 2008 and adapted for use as a boutique hotel, known as the Mansion Hill Inn.

Rundbogenstil architecture was extremely influential in England, with Alfred Waterhouse's buildings for what is now called the Natural History Museum (originally the British Museum Natural History Collection) in London showing a direct and self-conscious emulation of the style.

Plate from In Which Style Should We Build? by Heinrich Hübsch
Berlin Rykestrasse - 1904
Crimmitschau Bahnhof - 1873
Meissenheim Synagogue - 1866

Karl Friedrich Schinkel - 1781–1841 - German

architect - city planner - painter

Karl Friedrich Schinkel was a famous Prussian architect, painter, and set designer. Karl was born March 13, 1781, in Neuruppin, about 17 miles northwest of Berlin. His parents were Johan Cuno Christoph Schinkel and Dorothea Rose, daughter of a merchant. Schinkel was the second born of five children. A fire blazed through Neuruppin, in 1787, and took Karl's father's life. Schinkel's father was a local Lutheran pastor and inspector of schools and churches.

In 1794, his widowed mother moved her family to Berlin. It was said that the work of Friedrich Gilly (1772-1800) so influenced the sixteen year old Karl Friedrich Schinkel (then a student of Berlin's Gymnasium zum Graven Kloster) that he gave up his ambitions in music and painting for that of architecture. Gilly subscribed to the ideas of Johann Joachim Winckelmann, the art historian, who believed that: "The sole path to modern greatness lay in the study of the ancient."

Greek architecture was the pinnacle of this concept with its massive stonework, masonry, and Greek columns (as idealized in the Partheon) became a "new" Teutonic style." Wickelmann's words influenced Schinkel's work.

Karl Schinkel began his architectural training in Berlin, the Prussian capital, in 1799, and lived in the Gilly household. He learned from both architects David (1748-1808) and Friedrich Gilly (David's son), who originally lived in Pomerania. The Gillys were a sort of surrogate family.

In 1800, Schinkel lost both his mother and mentor, Friedrich Gilley. When Karl entered the General Architectural Training Institute, founded by David Gilly, he immediately became a member of their circle of architects. The Gillys taught him about building in brick and to appreciate the aesthetics of the Gothic style. The Gillys taught ideas from the French architects of the Revolutionary period: Claude Nicolas Ledoux and Jean-Nicolas-Louis Durand.

One of Schinkel's earliest works was a bed with bedside table, designed for Queen Louise for the Charlottenburg castle in Berlin. His use of light-coloured veneers anticipated the Biedermeier style. He was not afraid to experiment with shape and created pieces designed for specific places within a room. Typical Schinkel designs are for architectural secretaires and comfortable armchairs. His publication Vorbilder für Fabrikanten und Handwerker (Ro!e Models for Manufacturers and Craftsmen) in 1835 had a widespread influence. In later years, Schinkel's work drew less on the neoclassical style, and more on the designs of the Renaissance.

Neue Wache - Berlin - 1815-18

Neue Wache - Berlin - 1815
Design Drawing
Neue Wache - Berlin - 1818
Neue Wache - 1939
Neue Wache - July 8, 1945
Neue Wache - 2000

Schauspielhaus - Berlin - 1818-21

December 16, 1943

Altes Museum - Berlin - 1823-30


Werderscher Markt - Berlin - 1824-30


Schloß Charlottenhof - Potsdam - 1826-29

New Pavilion - 1824-25

The porcelain top of the tea table (1830) features Berlin monuments, many by Schinkel(clockwise from top): Altes Museum, Friedrich-Werdersche Church, Knobelsdorff's Royal Opera, Schlüter's Berlin Schloß, the Kronprinzenpalais with an addition by Heinrich Gentz, the garden fromt of Schloß Charlottenburg, the Stadtschloß in Potsdam, Schloß Charlottenburg, the Schloß(artificial ruin) on the Pfaueninsel, Schloß Glienicke, Ottmer's Singakademie (after a Schinkel project, and the Neue Wache.


Schloß Tegel - Potsdam - 1829-24


Nikolaikirche - Potsdam - 1830-37



Gothic Church on a Rock by the Sea - 1815
Castle by the River - 1820
Cathedral over a city / Medieval Town by Water - c.1830

Leo von Klenze - 1784–1864 - German

architect - painter

An architect, painter, and writer, Leo von Klenze is most noted for his work as court architect to Ludwig I, king of Bavaria. He designed streets, squares, and numerous monumental buildings that set the scale and tone of Munich, the Bavarian capital. His other European commissions ranged from Athens, where he was the first to take steps to preserve the Acropolis, to Saint Petersburg, Russia. In addition to building, Von Klenze studied public building finance, designed and arranged museum galleries of ancient art, and was an accomplished painter. His paintings exhibit a richness of detail and special attention to light and compositional space.

He successfully combined his talent for sharp observation with an equal and complementary ability to improve upon nature. On his visits to Italy, he both drew and painted landscapes and examined the remains of Greek temples as sources for his archaeological Greek style.

Glyptothek - Munich - 1816-1930

The Glyptothek, intended for the display of antique works of Art, was commenced in 1816, when Ludwig was yet Crown Prince. Built in the Ionic style, and by Leo von Klenze, it was finished in the year 1830. The details correspond with those of the Erechtheum of Athens; after which the entire Pronaos is shaped. The other part of the building, and the interior are inventions of von Klenze, on the basis of the conditions dictated by the purpose of the building.

The entire structure consists of one story only. lt is square, arises upon 3 colossal steps, and has all around, instead of windows, niches, in which are placed the marble statues of mythical and historical persons who were directly or indirectly promoters of plastic Art. According to the original design , the six statues of the facade are to immortalise ancient Art and its protectors; those of the west side (towards the Propylaea) the masters of the middle-ages, down to the XVI century; those on the east side: the foremost sculptors of our days. The group in the tympanum, designed by Martin Wagner, represents Minerva, as the protectress of plastic Art, more fully characterised by the 8 figures which surround her.

--Munich: Its Art-Treasures and Curiosities by H.A. Berlespsch, Bruckmann, 1871

On the right facade:
1) Hadrian, in the attire of a Roman general;
2) Prometheus with the man made by him;
3) Daedalus holding his right hand to his chin, and at his feet, the artificial wings which had enabled him to escape the labyrinth.
On the left facade:
1) Perilcles witb a helmet on, and a roll of parchment in his hands;
2) Phidias witb the statue of the Olympian Zeus, and
3) Vulcanus with tongs and bammer.


Walhalla - Regensberg - 1816-42

The Walhalla is named for the Valhalla of Norse Paganism. It was conceived in 1807 by Crown Prince Ludwig in order to support the then-gathering momentum for the unification of the many German states. Following his accession to the throne of Bavaria, construction took place between 1830 and 1842 under the supervision of the architect Leo von Klenze. The memorial displays some 65 plaques and 130 busts covering 2,000 years of history, beginning with Arminius, victor at the Battle of the Teutoburg Forest in 9 AD.


Alte Pinakothek - Munich - 1826-36


The Residenz - Munich - 1826-42

The Munich Residenz served as the seat of government and residence of the Bavarian dukes, electors and kings from 1508 to 1918. What began in 1385 as a castle in the north-eastern corner of the city (the Neuveste, or new citadel), was transformed by the rulers over the centuries into a magnificent palace, its buildings and gardens extending further and further into the town.

The former royal palace of the Wittelsbach monarchs of Bavaria. The complex of buildings contains ten courtyards and surrounded by numerous structures. The three structures + interiors designed by von Klenze are The Konigsbau, The Festaalbau(banquet hall), and Allerheiligen Hofkirche (Holy Court Church), and are identified by A, B, and C respectively in the map of the Residenz Complex.

Königsbau - 1926-1935

Immediately after he took power in 1825, King Ludwig I embarked on a large-scale expansion of the Residenz. In 1826 the architect Leo von Klenze started work on the Königsbau, a new residential palace in the south part of the Residence complex. Ludwig's love of Italy and the Renaissance determined the style of the extension, especially the façade on Max-Joseph-Platz, which Klenze designed using elements derived from the Palazzo Pitti and the Palazzo Rucellai in Florence. The new building was completed in 1835.

Every detail of the royal apartments, including the walls and the furniture, was designed in a uniform style by the architect of the Royal Palace, Leo von Klenze, the leading exponent of Neoclassicism in Munich. All the furniture was made by Munich cabinetmakers and sculptors in 1834-35.

The neue Königsbau, the third large part of the residence, on the southern extremity, was built by order of king Ludwig 1, under the direction of Leo von Klenze, during the years 1826-1835. It is magnificently furnished and fit for the dwelling of an accomplished Prince. The facade, 480 feet long, facing the Max Joseph Platz, shows in its architectonic aspect a thoroughly positive character, grand, indeed, but at the same time most simple, in which every attempt at decorating has strictly been avoided. It is believed that the Palazzo Pitti at Florence served as a model.

The apartments of the King are adorned by paintings from original drawings of Schnorr, Schwantbaler and Zimmermann, which are illustrations of the classical period of Greece more especially of the poems of Anacreon and Hesiodus, Homeric hymns; Pindar's songs, the tragedies of Aeschylus and Sophocles, the farces of Aristophanes, and the idyls of Theocrit. The chambers of the Queen contain representations of the poetical works of Walther v. d. Vogelweide, Wolfram v. Eschenbach, Bürger, Klopstock, Wieland, Goethe, Schiller and Ludwig Tiek.

--Munich: Its Art-Treasures and Curiosities by H.A. Berlespsch, Bruckmann, 1871


Festsaal Bau 1926-1942

The Festsaal-Bau extends the wings of the alte Residenz northward and its 800 feet long faces the Hofgarten. It was built by direction of king Ludwig J. in the late Italian Palace style, in 1832, from designs by Leo von Klenze, and was first used on the occasion of the marriage of Maximilian II. in October 1842. As the name indicates, it is only designed for great festivities. The saloons and reception-rooms are all on the first floor. The apartments on the ground-floor are appropriated to distinguished visitors.

This part of the palace is composed of a central core and two long wings which terminate in two pavilion-like corner buildings. In the middle structure adorned with arcades of massive columns and pillars, is the Throne Room.

To the Festsaal Bau, belongs only the central body, and the adjoining left wing (as seen from the Hofgarten). The right wing formed originally a part of the older palace; but is brought into architectonic harmony with the Festsaal Bau. lt is inhabited during the winter, by Ludwig II., the youthful king of Bavaria. Upon the arcades of the central building are 8 colossal statues by Schwanthaler, personifying the 8 provinces of the kingdom. An open loggia is formed by the 10 pillars, and in the lunettes, chief incidents from 'the history of Bavaria are represented by relief-medallions (two by two held by a genius). In the ground-floor are 6 saloons with encaustic wall-pictures, from Homer's Odyssey, from original drawings of Schwanthaler, executed by G. Hiltensperger.

--Munich: Its Art-Treasures and Curiosities by H.A. Berlespsch, Bruckmann, 1871


Allerheiligen-Hofkirche-Court Church of All Saints - 1826-1837

King Ludwig I had the Court Church of All Saints built from 1826 to 1837 from designs by his court architect, Leo von Klenze. On a visit to Palermo in 1823 when he was still Crown Prince, the king had been so impressed by the Norman-Byzantine Palatine Chapel dating from the 12th century that he expressed the desire to have a similar church building in the Residence. While Klenze had to comply with Ludwig’s wishes, he interpreted the medieval models in the spirit of the Neoclassical style he preferred.

Alllerheiligen-Hofkirche constitutes a part of the new residence ; and is also the work of König Ludwig I. The expenses defrayed from the privy-purse amounted to 481,600 fl. It was built by Leo von Klenze during the years 1826-1837, therefore before the Basilika. Regarding its style which is in conformity with the former, it represents in a measure the next following period, the Byzantinismus; as it reached its perfection in the XI century in Italy; and as it may be noticed at a chapel royal at Palermo. Whilst the interior, in its architectural arrangements, and general embellishment corresponds with that style, the facade on the contrary shows a free composition upon the basis of the earlier Roman forms; together with a bold attempt at originality, which unfortunately do not produce the desirable harmonious effect in general.

Eight Monolith-pillars of polished red marble, and four piers, support the lofts, reserved for the royal family and the court; which has produced a kind of three-aisles-like arrangement of the space 80 feet high, 165 feet long, and 100 feet broad, it culminates in a semi-circular apsis. the decoration here is very splendid, more so tban in the Basilika. One might almost consider it overdone ; if it was not partly justified by the Byzantine style; and by the, in The upper part of the building, symbolical p1ctures, sublime in their simplicity, and pervaded by a profound scriptural fervour. A very striking effect is produced by the circumstance that the coming in of the light by the windows is not visible, and hence from below the nave no windows are to be seen at all. The seemingly magical twilight produced by this, gives a most extraordinary effect to the paintings.

The ceiling of the chapel forms into two cupolas. To that which is above the portal, the music-loft is joined; and to that of the opposite end, the apsis for the chief altar. This gives to the upper space four compartments, which favour the division of the ceiling and wall-paintings in four cycles. Whi1st the walls are partly covered with genuine, and partly with stucco marble, the upper walls are entirely covered with a gold-ground, out of which arise the frescoes painted by H. von Hess; and his pupils, Joh. and Claud. Schraudolph, Koch, Müller and others.

--Munich: Its Art-Treasures and Curiosities by H.A. Berlespsch, Bruckmann, 1871


The Gallery of the History of Ancient Painting @ The New Hermitage - St. Petersburg - 1839-52

This gallery, conceived by Leo von Klenze as a prelude to the picture gallery of the Imperial Museum, is intended to remind visitors of the history of ancient art. The walls are decorated with 80 paintings on subjects from Ancient Greek myths and literary sources. The artist Georg Hiltensperger created them imitating the ancient encaustic technique - with wax-based paints on brass plates. The vaults carry bas-relief portraits of famous European artists, including the designer of the New Hermitage - Leo von Klenze. The gallery is used to display works by the outstanding Neo-Classical sculptor Antonio Canova (1757-1822) and his followers.

Hall of Liberation - Kelheim - 1842-63

In collaboration with Friedrich von Gärtner


Propyläen Gate - Munich - 1846-62

The Propylaea, the work of Leo von Klenze, are a relative reconstruction of the Propylaea on the Acropolia at Athens. The two Egyptian Pylons on their sides, as well as the connecting walls across the top of the pediments, are a finishing addition to the free central building, designed by von Klenze.

For the purpose of embellishing the 2 tympana, King Ludwig selected two subjects which have not come to pass in the manner they bad been conceived. The western gable represents the battles of liberation of the young Kingdom. In the centre, the figure of Hellas witb the mural crown is approached from both sides by the goddesses of victories by land and sea, followed by warriors. the eastern gable, towards the Königsplatz, extols the merits of King Otto I wbo deserved well of Greece by establishing civil order, and promoting civilization. He is clothed in an antique attire like Zeus, witb sceptre and laurel-wreatb, throning in the midst of the representatives of intellectual and material culture, who place themselves under his protection. As is well known, things happened quite different from what had been anticipated. For this latter group Scbwanthaler designed the composition. The other reliefs running along the square towers, were executed from drawings of Prof. Hiltensperger in marble and represent scenes of the battles of the Hellenes.

--Munich: Its Art-Treasures and Curiosities by H.A. Berlespsch, Bruckmann, 1871


Rummeshalle - Munich - 1850

In the immediate vicinity of Munich, is the Theresien Wiese with the Ruhmeshalle(Hall of Fame},and the Bavaria. The former is one of the best productions of Leo v. Klenze, who erected it, 1843-1852, by order of King Ludwig I. lt was intended to be a memorial to natives and foreigners who had distinguished themselves by their meritorious pursuits. lt is a work of great originality and harmony of proportions, and unites in a very ingenious manner the character of a Doric temple with that of a hall. lt has the form of a broken horse-shoe, open towards the east, and rests upon a groundwork, 15 feet high, is 230 feet long, (the wings only 106 feet), 46 feet high; and built of Untersberger marble. Of great beauty are the 48 pillars, each 24 feet high. The frieze running around has 92 metopes; 48 of which are representations from the history of Bavarian culture. The drawings are by Schwanthaler. In the hall are 90 life-size busts, which look, however, insignificant on account of the grand proportions of the building. They are placed in historical order.

Before this building stands upon a die of grey marble the largest casting in the world, the colossal statue of the Bavaria, the right band at the sword, holding in the uplifted left a laurel-wreath; at her side the Bavarian lion. L. v. Schwanthaler modelled the gigantic figure, during the years 1838-1846, assisted by his pupils. The whole body is hollow, and by paying a small gratuity, the visitor may ascend by iron steps into the bead of the figure, in which upon 2 sofas six persons can be comfortably seated. The metal used for it is from cannons, taken in the wars with Turkey and Norway. The entire expenses (without the pedestal) amounted to 288,000 florins; Schwanthaler alone received 28,800 florins.

--Munich: Its Art-Treasures and Curiosities by H.A. Berlespsch, Bruckmann, 1871



The Akropolis - Athens - 1846

Heinrich Hübsch - 1795–1863 - German


Heinrich Hübsch was born on February 9, 1795 in Weinheim an der Bergstraße. After attending grammar school in Darmstadt, Heinrich Hübsch enrolled at the University of Heidelberg in the spring of 1813, where he studied philosophy and mathematics. However, his scientific education did not satisfy him; rather, his interest in art awoke after his preoccupation with the works of Goethe and Schlegel, as well as with the old German collection of paintings by the brothers Sulpiz and Melchior Boisseree.

After joining the building school of Friedrich Weinbrenner in Karlsruhe in 1815, Hübsch initially had to postpone his own artistic ambitions. In 1817 he undertook a trip to Italy, where he lived preferably in Rome during his three-year stay. Hübsch studied ancient architecture and after a trip in 1819 to Athens and Constantinople in 1822 in Heidelberg two works on Greek architecture out.

Hübsch also saw in Rome the early Christian basilicas, in which he recognized the models for his own work. The Gothic of Upper and Central Italy, which had seemed imperfect on the outward journey in comparison with the German Gothic, also gained decisive importance for him on his return home.

In 1820, Hübsch placed with Friedrich Weinbrenner passed the state examination and returned, because in Karlsruhe no suitable field of activity for him, in 1822 to the completion of his studies back to Rome. In the spring of 1824, Hübsch was hired as a teacher at the trade school of the newly founded Städel Institute in Frankfurt. In 1827 he moved, after he had made himself as an architect of the Protestant church in Barmen and the orphanage in Frankfurt a name in the Baden civil service.

In his book "In welchem Style sollen wir bauen?" (In which style should we build?, 1828) he distanced himself from Weinbrenner's neoclassical style in his support of Rundbogenstil, a style for which he has been credited.

In 1832 Hübsch was transferred to the management of the Karlsruhe School of Architecture, where he taught until 1854. As Weinbrenner's successor in the management of Baden's Baudirektion he was until his death in 1863, the leading architect of the Grand Duchy of Baden.

Hübsch's main works include the Kunsthalle (1837-1846) and Theater (1851-1853) in Karlsruhe, the Trinkhalle in Baden-Baden (1837-1840), the main church in Wuppertal-Unterbarmen (1828-32) and the western building of the Speyer Cathedral (1848-1853).

Staatliche Kunsthalle - Karlsruhe - 1836-46


Speyer Basilica West Entry - Speyer - 1854-58


Trink Halle - Baden-Baden - 1937-40


Friedrich von Gärtner - 1791–1847 - German


Friedrich von Gärtner (December 10, 1791 in Koblenz – April 21, 1847 in Munich) was a German architect. His father was also an architect, and moved in 1804 to Munich, where young Gärtner received his first education in architecture. To complete that education, he went in 1812 to Paris, where he studied under Percier, and in 1814 to Italy, where he spent four years in the earnest study of antiquities. The fruits of this labor appeared in 1819 in some views accompanied by descriptions of the principal monuments of Sicily

After a visit to England, Gärtner was appointed, in 1820, professor of architecture in the Academy of Munich. His work as a practical architect began with this appointment. In 1822 Friedrich von Gärtner was appointed artistic director of the Nymphenburg Porcelain Manufactory. Gärtner eventually became head government surveyor of buildings and from 1842 director of the Academy of Fine Arts in Munich.

Gärtner and Leo von Klenze are the most well known architects of Bavaria during the reign of Ludwig I. His architecture was generally in the Romanesque style and much to the king's taste.

Gärtner's Ludwigskirche in the Ludwigsstrasse in Munich strongly influenced other church architecture, especially in North America.

Main projects

  • In Munich
    • Ludwigskirche
    • Feldherrnhalle[1]
    • Siegestor
    • University building
    • Bayerische Staatsbibliothek
    • Wittelsbacher Palais (destroyed)
  • Pompejanum in Aschaffenburg
  • Kursaal and Arcades in Bad Kissingen
  • He began the Befreiungshalle in Kelheim that was redesigned by the architect Leo von Klenze and built accordingly.
  • Old Royal Palace in Athens, a building now used as the Hellenic Parliament

Ludwigskirche - Munich - 1829-44


Bavarian State Library - Munich - 1832-42


Arkaden Building - Bad Kissingen - 1834-38


Ludwigh Maximillian Univ. - Munich - 1835-40


Royal Palace (Now: Parliament Bldg.) - Athens - 1836-43


Pompejanum - Aschaffenburg - 1839-50


Feldherrnhalle - Munich - 1841-44


Hall of Liberation - Kelheim - 1842-63

In collaboration with Leo von Klenze


Wittelsbacher Palais - Munich - 1843-49


Siegestor - Munich - 1843-52


Franz Heinrich Schwechten - 1841–1924 - German

architect - painter

Franz Heinrich Schwechten (12 August 1841 – 11 August 1924) was one of the most famous German architects of his time, and contributed to the development of historicist architecture.

Schwechten was born in Cologne, the son of a district court judge. He attended Gymnasium, taking his Abitur in 1860, and went on to work as an apprentice of master builder Julius Carl Raschdorff, who would later design the Berlin Cathedral. In 1861, Schwechten enrolled in the Bauakademie (Academy of Architecture) in Berlin, where he studied under Karl Bötticher and Friedrich Adler. During a practical training period following the completion of his studies in December 1863, Schwechten worked first for several months with Friedrich August Stüler, until May 1864, and then with Martin Gropius, until June 1865.

When he was 28, Schwechten received an award for the design of a Prussian Parliament building from the Berlin Architect's Union. He began his career as chief architect of the Berlin-Anhalt Railway Company. His first major work was the Berlin Anhalter Bahnhof train station terminal.

Among his works were the designs of Tyszkiewicz Palace in Palanga (Polangen) and the Imperial Castle in Poznań (Posen). One of the most notable of Schwechten's designs was the Kaiser Wilhelm Memorial Church (completed in 1895), with its 113-metre-high (371 ft) tower and Neo-Romanesque style elements.

Schwechten became a member of the Prussian Academy of Arts in 1885, and served as its president from 1915 to 1918. In 1904 he was honored with the title of "Geheimer Baurat" (privy building officer), and in 1906 he was named a professor. He served as a lecturer at the Royal Polytechnic University in Charlottenburg.

Schwechten died in Berlin and was buried in Schöneberg.

Anhalter Bahnhof - Berlin - 1876-80

July 1945
circa 2000
circa 2015

Apostel-Paulus-Kirche - Berlin - 1892-1894


Ständehaus Merseburg - Merseburg - 1892-1895


Mauseleum-Dukes of Anhalt - Dessau - 1894-1898


Emperor Wilhelm Memorial Church - Berlin - 1895


Grünewald Tower - Berlin - 1897-1899


Saint Peter & Saint Paul Kirche - Steinach - 1899


Romanisches Haus - Berlin - 1901

1964 - Europa Center

Erlöserkirche - Bad Homburg - 1902-1908


Kaiser Bridge - Mainz - 1904


Imperial Castle - Poznan - 1910


Haus Vaterland - Berlin - 1912

circa 1950
circa 1985
Park Kolonnaden - Completion 2002-04
A knod to the original....
Potsdamer Platz - c.2006