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Heinrich Tessenow

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Biography Heinrich Tessenow

(b. Rostock, Germany 1876; d. Berlin, Germany 1950)

Henrich Tessenow was born in Rostock, Germany in 1876. He studied as an apprentice carpenter before entering the School of Building in Leipzig. He studied at the Technical High School in Munich from 1901 to 1902 after which he held several teaching positions.

Tessenow disowned architecture as art. From 1910, he began translating his vision of a functional, craft based architecture into reality. Deeply affected by the chaos generated by the First World War, he came to believe that he could only achieve a new social cohesion for people in "organic" small towns.

Tessenow established himself as a humanist, who combined the architectural traditions of the Art & Crafts movement with a monumental Greek style. He brought the Garden City idea to international attention and partially influenced Le Corbusier with his combination of grand architecture and traditional craft.

An important 20th century architects who fostered an individual and human architecture, Tessenow dealt seriously with the problems of high-density housing and of housing for those of modest means. Interest in Tessenow and his architecture has gradually revived in the last few decades of the 20th century.

Tessenow died in Berlin in 1950.

Dennis Sharp. The Illustrated Encyclopedia of Architects and Architecture. New York: Quatro Publishing, 1991. ISBN 0-8230-2539-X. NA40.I45. p152.

Muriel Emmanuel. Contemporary Architects. New York: St. Martin's Press, 1980. ISBN 0-312-16635-4. NA680.C625.

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