Issue 1(33)/2013

doi:10.37190/arc (doi:10.5277/arc)

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  1. Wojciech Brzezowski - The Silesians and theories of garden art from the 16th to the 18th century with new research from the Wrocław University Library collection
  2. Ewa Małachowicz - The Fountain of Neptune from Nowy Targ Square in Wrocław
  3. Bogna Ludwig - The smallest housing estates designed by Ernst May. How to create an intimate residential complex
  4. Małgorzata Bartnicka - Forgotten rules, distorted ideas. The remaining legacy of the innovative late 1920s  and early 1930s
  5. Ewa Cisek - Norwegian nest developments in the context of “deep ecology” by Arne Næss
  6. Piotr Furmanek - In search of fractal architecture’s principles
  7. Dagmara Sietko-Sierkiewicz, David Weclawowicz, Paweł Kirschke - Transformation TXL


Wojciech Brzezowski - The Silesians and theories of garden art from the 16th to the 18th century with new research from the Wrocław University Library collection


The importance endowed upon gardens in the period of the Renaissance and the Baroque may be witnessed not only in realizations but also in the number of treatises devoted to them. In the collection of old prints of the Wrocław University Library there is a substantial collection of works devoted to agronomy, botany and garden art. A considerable part of them was used in Silesia in the 17th and 18th centuries, as they originate from collections of old Wrocław libraries or Silesian monastic libraries. But the Silesians were not only passive recipients of works devoted to gardens, they also participated in propagating the knowledge of garden art. As early as 1590 there appeared a work devoted to agronomy, whose author was Martin Grosser, a parish priest from Szewce (Schewitz) near Wrocław. The treatise of Johan Christof Hibner, Horticultura […], was published in 1664. Hibner was a gardener of the duke of Oława. For the first time in the history of Silesia the potato was mentioned in this work. It also contains a register of garden plants of over 40 pages. However, it seems hardly possible that at that time all the plants mentioned by Hibner were cultivated in Silesian gardens and this text is more of an expression of an ideal vision, nevertheless, no doubt, it had an influence on spreading new tendencies in the art of gardening. A similar function was performed by another 17th century work of Silesian gardeners – the treatise of Georg Herbst Des Schlesischen Gartners Lustiger Spatziergang, published in 1692. The author performed the function of the gardener of duke Christian Ulrich von Würtemberg. An event which went beyond the area of Silesia was the publishing in Wrocław in 1708 the German translation of the work called Curiositez de la nature et de l’art sur la végétation, written by Pierre le Lorrain de Vallemont. The translation of this work was carried out by Ferdinand Ludwig von Bresler und Aschenburg, a member of the Wrocław municipal counsel. The work of Jacques Vanière Praedium rusticum devoted to gardening and published in 1727 by the printing house of the Jesuit College, should also be mentioned here. There are many other garden treatises in the collections of Wrocław. Ownership signs and one-time inventory numbers indicate that most of them belonged to former Silesian libraries and so this points to the fact that it was known and with all certainty influenced the art of gardening in Silesia.

  •     theory
  •     gardening
  •     silesia
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    Ewa Małachowicz - The Fountain of Neptune from Nowy Targ Square in Wrocław


    The text “The Fontaine of Neptune from Nowy Targ square in Wrocław” increased by the fact of discovering the sculptural and architectural Baroque decoration of The Fontaine of Neptune, which till 1945 stood in Nowy Targ. This event took place during archeological excavation held by professor Jerzy Piekalski and the archeological team from The Archeology Institute of Wrocław University. Detailes found and the analysis of the ob ject’s iconography deliver new informations about the well known but not existing piece of small architecture. This has also given the opportunity to present the monument’s reconstrucion of the authorship of dr inż. arch. Maciej Małachowicz and mgr inż. arch. Rafał Karnicki.

  •     baroque
  •     sculpture
  •     wrocław
  •     the-fountain-of-neptune
  •     nowy-targ-square
  •     johann-adam-karinger
  •     johann-baptist-lemberger
  •     johann-jakob-bauer
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    Bogna Ludwig - The smallest housing estates designed by Ernst May. How to create an intimate residential complex


    In the scenery of the suburbs of Lower Silesian cities and small towns we can observe a distinctive group of complexes of residential buildings. Small ground-floor or sometimes storied one-family or two-family houses with modest architecture that relates to forms of local classicism usually produce diverse systems of streets and squares. All these housing complexes came into being as a result of activities of two construction companies called “Schlesische Landgesellschaft” and “Schlesisches Heim” (“Schlesische Heimstätte”) within a relatively short time just after the end of the World War I when Ernst May worked as an architectural manager of both of these firms. They constitute an example of a very interesting solution to the housing problem and a specific alternative for development of cities. The housing estates which are the smallest ones constitute the best examples of implementing architectural and urban ideas of the so called small housing estates (Kleinsiedlung). They represented the first steps in the formation of the theory and practice of designing single-family housing estates. “Schlesische Heimstätte” during its whole activity dealt with construction of small housing estates and this aspect of its activity, in accordance with the government directives, was treated as fundamental. Small housing estates, depending on accepted orders, had different functions. Thus, they were agricultural housing estates (Dobroszyce, Czarne, Nowy Folwark near Jelcz), semi-agricultural housing estates on the outskirts of towns (Brzeg Dolny, Ząbkowice Śląskie, housing estates in the areas around Wrocław), workers’ estates near coalmines and factories as well as near railways (Stary Lesieniec, Małujowice, Oleśnica, Dzierżoniów, Nowa Ruda, Chojnów, Prudnik). Systems of the so called small housing estates were also introduced into the extensive development designs (Radków, Niemcza, Lądek-Zdrój, Kluczbork). Depending on a given area, type of terrain and adjoining developments, the urban arrangement of these estates differed and consequently various architectural solutions of buildings were employed. In the process of designing houses and applying urban solutions, principles of design inherited from Art Nouveau and regionalism were initially very important; however, with time, rules of functionalism played a more significant role. Small housing estates of the interwar period in Lower Silesia are certainly one of the most interesting examples of solutions of residential complexes. Their most characteristic feature, which adds to their particular charm, is the way of arranging their small urban interiors such as various small squares or street bends. All these solutions still remain as the ideas which are really worth imitating when designing architecture and urbanism of housing estates up to the present.

  •     ernst-may
  •     regionalism
  •     housing-estates
  •     lower-silesia
  •     20th-century-urbanism
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    Małgorzata Bartnicka - Forgotten rules, distorted ideas. The remaining legacy of the innovative late 1920s  and early 1930s


    At the end of the 19th century it was noticed that one’s work efficiency highly depends on the life conditions, psychological well being and general health. One of the crucial factors contributing to the well being are the immediate living conditions. At the time, intense and growing building development motivated by the increasing infl ux of population into towns and cities, relied on quick and cost effective solutions. These new flats and buildings were to be ‘health-conscious’ – providing a lot of light, air and sun. At the same time, new structural solutions and technologies, as well as new materials, were being developed. All these latest solutions were shown in building exhibitions and trade fairs. There were many experimental housing developments designed and presented at various trade fairs. Later on, flats from such new developments were sold and let. Most famous are those designed and built by Werkbund: Weissenhof Estate (1927, Stuttgart), New House – Nový Dům (1928, Brno), WUWA (1929, Wrocław), WOBA – Eglisée (1930, Basel), Neubühl (1931, Zurich), Werkbundsiedlung (1932, Vienna) and Baba (1932, Prague). Many of the new solutions and innovative ideas used in these developments have been later used on a bigger scale in public housing estates developments; many times these ideas have been misunderstood, distorted or mis-applied. Currently, new building regulations show almost complete disregard of these initial ideas and rules. The idea of the provision of accurate sunlight conditions in a flat, is the one that seems to be most disregarded and even endangered in the current building regulations and procedures.

  •     housing-developments
  •     experimental-housing-estates
  •     sunlight
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    Ewa Cisek - Norwegian nest developments in the context of “deep ecology” by Arne Næss


    A holistic picture of the world showing its biological diversity and unquestionable value of all life forms, i.e. the picture that is present in the creative activity of Arne Næss became a foundation for an environmental philosophy concept known as deep ecology. Næss philosophy has a si gnificant impact on the way of perceiving the world, nature, man and his acts of creation. A belief that life in all its forms is mutually intertwined similarly to a Nordic weave is also reflected in the way of shaping architectural forms and residential structures by Norwegians in the open landscape. Particular attention should be focused on nest systems of farm developments which are especially popular in the eastern part of the country. They reflect one of the most important archetypes, i.e. a circle with an accentuated centre that – according to Carl Gustav Jung – symbolises the image of fullness – of Self with all its components being strictly interdependent and balanced with one another in mutual harmony. In the idea of the nest form human settlement, we can notice that a philosophical thought, which refers to the trend of deep ecology, presents architectural creative activity of man in a completely different light. The attitude towards nature cannot be perceived as romantic in this context because it is not entirely deprived of uti litaria nism. It is rather an approach that respects nature’s laws and recognises that nature has an internal value which is not only instrumental. In order to harmoniously coexist with nature, it is necessary to start from scratch: to eliminate sources of pollution, to limit excessive consumption, to promote life based on simple means because the quality of life is not proved by its standard but by the way we experience the surrounding world and ourselves. Thus, in small Norwegian communities residing in nest developments ecological solutions are introduced consisting in planning and exploiting the land, production and consumption of local green products, ecological education and ecological agriculture.

  •     deep-ecology
  •     arne-næss
  •     nest-development
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    Piotr Furmanek - In search of fractal architecture’s principles


    In 2002 Charles Jencks, a famous American architect, historian and architecture critic added two new chapters to one of his most important works The Language of Post-Modern Architecture: “The New Paradigm I – Complexity Architecture” and “The New Paradigm II – ‘Fractal Architecture’”. In the newly added chapters, the author proclaims the birth of new trends in contemporary architecture, saying that its future will belong to fractals, universe and waving forms. Analyzing this thesis further one can notice certain inconsistencies in Charles Jencks’ argumentation and so the author of this article writes a polemic, suggesting appropriate principles of fractal architecture based on mathematical theory of fractals.

  •     fractal-objects
  •     iterated-function-system
  •     fractal-architecture
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    Dagmara Sietko-Sierkiewicz, David Weclawowicz, Paweł Kirschke - Transformation TXL


    Der vorgestellte und von Dagmara Sietko-Sierkiewicz und David Weclawowicz bearbeitete Entwurf, Tranformation TXL erhielt 2013 den Hauptpreis des 158. Schinkel- Wettberbs in der Kategorie Architektur. Der prämierte Beitrag, plant den Umbau des Berliner Flughafengeländes in einen neuen Stadtteil der Wohnen und produzierendes Gewerbe vereint, und dabei die Grenzen zwischen Leben und Arbeit verwischt. Die städtebauliche Konzeption richtet sich nach den vom Hauptterminal definierten Achsen und schlägt eine Reihe offener Quartiere vor. Die Produktionshallen sind von der Anlieferungsstraße zugänglich, die dazugehörigen Dienstleistungen und Wohnungen öffnen sich Plätzen innerhalb der Quartiere. Die Produktionshallen sind so geplant, dass sie nach Feierabend als Rekreationsorte genutzt werden können. Die rasterartig aufgebaute Stahlkonstruktion ermöglicht verschiedene Nutzungsvarianten für die Wohnungs grundrisse, den Einsatz von vorfabrizierten Elementen sowie einen schnellen Auf- und Rückbau. Gleichzeitig wurde großer Wert auf nachhaltige Ideen gelegt, die einen minimalen technischen und ökonomischen Aufwand bedeuten.

  •     schinkelwettbewerb
  •     karl-friedrich-schinkel
  •     berlin
  •     flughafen-tegel
  •     manufaktur
  •     transformation
  •     produktion
  •     nachhaltigkeit
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