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Otto Wagner

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Works Landerbank, at Vienna, Austria, 1883 to 1884.

Majolica House, at Vienna, Austria, 1898 to 1899.

Post Office Savings Bank, at Vienna, Austria, 1904 to 1912.

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Biography Otto Wagner

(b. Penzing, Vienna 1841; d. Vienna 1918)

Otto Wagner was born in Penzing, near Vienna in 1841. He studied at the Technische Hochschule in Vienna, at the Berlin Bauakademie, and at the Academy of Fine Arts in Vienna. In 1894 he supervised and taught at a special school of architecture within the Academy of Fine Arts. Moderne Architecktur, his inaugural address at the school, called for an architecture based exclusively on modern materials and modern construction methods.

In 1890 Wagner designed a new city plan for Vienna, but only his urban rail network was used. This network borrowed from the classical urban monumentality of his early training but adopted the modern construction and functional planning he so adamantly demanded. The buildings within the network exhibited a decorative styling that owed much to the Secession school.

Wagner continued searching for a style which embodied the principles he taught. In his later works he dispensed with almost all ornamentation and used materials in their simplest forms. These works show a simple but effective blending of plan, space and materials.

A highly influential figure in the development of Modern architecture, Wagner died in Vienna in 1918.

Dennis Sharp. The Illustrated Encyclopedia of Architects and Architecture. New York: Quatro Publishing, 1991. ISBN 0-8230-2539-X. NA40.I45. p161.

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