Karl Marx Hof
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Architect Karl Ehn
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Location Vienna, Austria   map
Date 1930   timeline
Building Type multifamily housing
 Construction System brick and stucco ?
Climate temperate
Context urban
Style Early Modern
Notes large archways through block of building make symmetrical figures with balconies.


Photo, facade and archways

Photo, facade in context

Photo, central facade


Elevation Drawing

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Discussion Karl Marx Hof Commentary

"The contrast with the aims and methods of American Redevelopment could hardly be more striking. The most eloquent masterpiece among the groups was surely Darl Ehn's Heiligenstadt Houses (the Karl Marx Hof) of 1927-1930—a mighty fortress, where the major facade is a proud, dark banner of socialist solidarity. It was to be stormed alike by the troops of Dollfuss and the Red Army. It clearly infuriated many people, a little bit as the Guild House does today, but its powerful shapes, Piranesian on the exterior but much more gently articulated in the lovely garden courtyards, in fact historically culminate and bring to an enormous social climax the special Viennese tradition of Otto Wagner and his school. The scale is grander, like that of all the Viennese housing, than that of the Guild House, but the two buildings are related insofar as they both gesture like signboards to tell us what they are about. How correct the gentle irony of the American example is in this particular instance, and how stirring the Austrian's truimphant deployment: in simple political fact daring hell and surviving."

— Vincent Scully, Jr. Modern Architecture: The Architecture of Democracy. p54.

Sources on Karl Marx Hof

Howard Davis. Slide from photographer's collection. PCD.2260.1012.1702.023. PCD.2260.1012.1702.022. PCD.2260.1012.1702.021

Kenneth Frampton. Modern Architecture 1851-1945. New York: Rizzoli International Publications, 1983. ISBN 0-8478-0506-9. LC 83-61363. NA642.F7 1983. main elevation, p303. — Available at Amazon.com

Vincent Scully, Jr. Modern Architecture: The Architecture of Democracy. Revised Edition. New York: George Braziller, 1974. SBN 0-8076-0159-4. LC 61-13689. NA680.S395 1974. discussion p54.

Dennis Sharp. Twentieth Century Architecture: a Visual History. New York: Facts on File, 1990. ISBN 0-8160-2438-3. NA680.S517. exterior photos, p112. — Available at Amazon.com

Kevin Matthews. The Great Buildings Collection on CD-ROM. Artifice, 2001. ISBN 0-9667098-4-5.— Available at Amazon.com

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