'History is not the Past but Another Mightier Presence’: the founding of the Institute of History and Theory of Architecture at the Eidgenössische Technische Hochschule (ETH) Zurich and its effects on Swiss Architecture’

Ruth Hanisch, Steven Spier

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

    Abstract

    The Institute for the History and Theory of Architecture (gta) was founded in1967 explicitly to facilitate exchange between the architects and the historians of architecture teaching in the Faculty of Architecture at Zurich's famous Eidgenössische Technische Hochschule (ETH). The founding members, Adolf Max Vogt, Paul Hofer, Bernhard Hoesli and others, encouraged a younger generation of architects to deepen and widen their knowledge of the history of architecture by working in the institute as research assistants and often writing doctoral dissertations. But it was very much due to the catalyst of the guest professor Aldo Rossi that the link between architecture and the history of architecture seriously influenced design strategy. Two of the many research collaborators at the gta who proved to be particularly important for their fellow students were Bruno Reichlin and Martin Steinmann. With the help of history they developed a r'recherché patiente' into the semiology of building and took this as a starting point for the design process, which influenced a whole generation of young architects to develop what became the new Swiss architecture so lauded today.
    LanguageEnglish
    Pages655-686
    JournalJournal of Architecture
    Volume14
    Issue number6
    Publication statusPublished - 2009

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    Zurich
    History
    Founding
    History of Architecture
    Aldo Rossi
    Fellow Students
    Teaching
    Collaborators
    Faculty of Architecture
    Historian
    Semiology

    Cite this

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    abstract = "The Institute for the History and Theory of Architecture (gta) was founded in1967 explicitly to facilitate exchange between the architects and the historians of architecture teaching in the Faculty of Architecture at Zurich's famous Eidgen{\"o}ssische Technische Hochschule (ETH). The founding members, Adolf Max Vogt, Paul Hofer, Bernhard Hoesli and others, encouraged a younger generation of architects to deepen and widen their knowledge of the history of architecture by working in the institute as research assistants and often writing doctoral dissertations. But it was very much due to the catalyst of the guest professor Aldo Rossi that the link between architecture and the history of architecture seriously influenced design strategy. Two of the many research collaborators at the gta who proved to be particularly important for their fellow students were Bruno Reichlin and Martin Steinmann. With the help of history they developed a r'recherch{\'e} patiente' into the semiology of building and took this as a starting point for the design process, which influenced a whole generation of young architects to develop what became the new Swiss architecture so lauded today.",
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