"300 YEARS ENTWURFF"
Hauptgebäude, 1. Stock
Dear faculty members and students,
We cordially invite you to our symposium 300 YEARS ENTWURFF on April 29th, 2022 at TU Wien. It will take place at the Festsaal, Karlsplatz 13, from 10 AM to 6 PM. Under the coordination of Pier Paolo Tamburelli, the symposium will focus on the Entwurff Einer Historischen Architectur, discussed by a group of international architects and historians including Shumi Bose, Hermann Czech, Maarten Delbeke, Manuel Herz, Sam Jacob, Djamel Klouche, Mark Lee, Dubravka Sekulić, and Caroline van Eck.
On 26 July 1721 the Wiener Diarium informed its readers that a new book by the general surveyor of constructions, Johann Bernhard Fischer von Erlach, was ready for subscribers to collect from the architect’s place. The price of the book was 30 Gulden (40 without pre-ordering) and it was titled Entwurff Einer Historischen Architectur. The Entwurff is a collection of 86 sheets illustrating the architecture of the Jews, Egyptians, Syrians, Persians, Greeks, Romans, Arabs, Turks, Siamese, Chinese and Japanese, along with some of the author's projects. The title of the book is challenging. Literally translated into English, it would read Project (but also as Essay, Draft or Sketch) of a Historical Architecture. Here the semantic realms of architecture and history are not combined the way we might expect. Fischer does not speak of architectural history; he speaks of historical architecture. But what does historical architecture mean?
On the anniversary of the publication, 300 YEARS ENTWURFF proposes to look back at Fischer’s book as a project, and to discuss it as a precise historical initiative linked to a defined context and as a possible attitude to respond to contemporary architecture. The Entwurff is an attempt to bring monuments from across the globe into an infinitely expandable classicism, and, through this, an attempt at transforming this very same classicism by confronting it with new tasks. What is the implicit geopolitical perspective of this project? What is its relation to the archaic and fragile Empire that made it possible? What is the Entwurff’s conception of time? What were the criteria for the selection of buildings? Why does Fischer present monuments from Iran and China, but not from India or Mexico? Why Stonehenge? Why no Gothic cathedrals? Why the Nile waterfalls? Why does Fischer seem so contemporary? Just because he has never been modern?
We hope to see you on the 29th. FFP2 mask obligation applies in closed rooms at TU Wien until further notice. Please visit our website for more information: