Master builders have been granted membership of the Akademie der Künste since 1696, the year of its foundation. The earliest materials within the Archive documenting the art of architecture date back to the end of the 18th century and give testimony to the pursuits of tutors and pupils at the Akademie. It was not until the end of the 1950s under the post-war president of the Akademie in West Berlin, the architect Hans Scharoun, that bequests from architects began to be received into the Archive.
This publication offers for the first time a comprehensive overview of the archives of architects, engineers, landscape architects, architectural photographers and critics, all of which have been bequeathed to the Architectural Archive of the Akademie der Künste. All 71 archives and 80 collections are introduced with brief biographies of the original authors and descriptions denoting the nature and scope of the holdings. Friedrich Gilly from the Preußische Akademie der Künste is, among others, represented with drawings. A particular abundance of documentation reflects the era of Expressionism following the First World War with the works of Hugo Häring, Hans Scharoun, Bruno Taut, Hans and Wassili Luckhardt, Alfons Anker, Paul Goesch, Adolf Behne and Heinrich Lauterbach. The archives of Richard Ermisch, Paul Baumgarten and Thilo Schoder date back as far as the 1920s. Particular emphasis is laid upon those architects forced to emigrate after 1933, among their number Gabriel Epstein, Julius Posener, Konrad Wachsmann, Adolf Rading and Harry Rosenthal. The post-war period and the 1960s are represented by the archives of Max Taut, Walter Rossow, Dieter Oesterlen, Bernhard Pfau, Ludwig Leo, Bernhard Hermkes, Helmut Hentrich, Werner Hebebrand, Hermann Henselmann, Werner Düttmann, Friedrich Spengelin and Heinz Graffunder. Archives and collections extending into the 21st century emanate from Kurt Ackermann, Hans-Busso von Busse, Peter von Seidlein, Manfred Sack, Jörg Schlaich, Szyszkowitz + Kowalski, Haus-Rucker-Co, Valentien + Valentien and Arno Brandlhuber.
This publication also provides an overview of the history of the Architectural Archive and, with 906 images, sets out a selection of around 350,000 drawings and plans, 100,000 photographs, 450 models and provides over and above a very substantial amount of written archival materials.