Tag Archives: Experssionism

New Books at the Architecture and Planning Library: Fragments of Metropolis Berlin

Lehmann, Niels and Christoph Rauhut. Fragments of Metropolis Berlin: Berlin’s Expressionist Legacy. Introduction by Hans Kolhoff. Translated by Philip Shelley. Munich: Hirmer, 2015.

Fragments_of_Metropolis_BerlinTwo short articles, one by Hans Kolhoff and the other by Christoph Rauhut, are offered by way of introduction in which the authors seek to situate the importance of Expression in architectural history.  Kolhoff writes:

The Expressionists believed in a modernity that emerged from tradition but without rupture and which denied all forms of the purely stylistic; this was how they were able to achieve their own style. For us they represent ‘another Modernism’, that was intuitively opposed to that kind of white Modernism before it was ever celebrated as the International Style. (pg. viii)

Most of the book is dedicated to creating a record of Expressionism in Berlin, consisting primarily of photographs accompanied occasionally by a drawing, whether plan, section, or elevation. Lehamann and Rauhut write:

The surviving fragments are witnesses of an avant-garde that gave expression to a new society through architecture: the buildings are built utopias.  (Preface)

The book itself is thus an attempt to bear witness to the surviving fragments.