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architectural archive vorarlberg - Documentation and research center for the building culture and architectural history of Vorarlberg (Austria)
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              zur baukultur und architekturgeschichte vorarlbergs aav - architekturarchiv vorarlberg

Volksschule Nüzider 1963, Planung: C4, Foto:
                  Erika Sillaber
Volksschule Nüziders, 1963 Planung: C4; Foto: Erika Sillaber


Robert Fabach
Eichholzstrasse 3a
A 6900 Bregenz

Rotensterngasse 15a/5
A 1020 Vienna

T +43 699 174 76625


The Architectural Archive Vorarlberg is a institution for documentation and research of the building culture and architectural history of Vorarlberg. Its task is promoting, understanding and research and communicating this culture to a professional world concerned with building culture and to an interested public. The Vorarlberg Architecture Archive collects for the vorarlberg museum according to archival and museum standards. The architectural archive is an institution for the vorarlberg museum and is supported by project sponsors. The content is managed by the initiator and freelance curator Robert Fabach.

Areas of activity
The activities of the Architecture Archive Vorarlberg cover:

- Collection
Collections are made for the vorarlberg museum on building culture in Vorarlberg in a time window from around 1500 to 1995. This includes rural house forms but also the work of Vorarlberg architects. The focus is on the years 1955-1995, in which significant contemporary developments took place and for which many current sources are in danger of disappearing. Pre-/post-legacies: Securing, overview inventory and appropriate storage in the Vorarlberg Museum archive, subsequent detailed inventory and processing. Interviews with contemporary witnesses: Interviews are conducted on an ongoing basis for documentation purposes and as a commentary on building culture. (audio/video). Inspection of existing collections and archives in Vorarlberg and relevant archives outside the state borders.

- Research
The Architecture Archive is a platform for specific scientific projects and architectural research. Scientific work is stimulated and ongoing research projects are encouraged to exchange specialist content. The history of architecture is linked with other historical disciplines (particularly within the museum), mutually indexed and examined for relevant data. The long-term and programmatic goal is to compile a history of architecture in Vorarlberg that traces a development from the Baroque master builders to the present day in a discursive way and with different authors. However, the current architectural discourse is covered in a complementary way by existing institutions such as the Vorarlberg Architecture Institute or the Central Association of Architects.

- Communication
As visible results of the work of the Architecture Archive, publications are promoted or published and the historical dimension and the overall cultural value of Vorarlberg's building culture are communicated to an interested public. In addition to the supervision and promotion of publications from the field of research, activity reports on relevant projects (e.g. brief descriptions on the occasion of the acquisition of pre/post-acquisition material, or summaries of events) are planned in a suitable form. The Architecture Archive has no permanent exhibition space. Exhibition projects are realized or supported in cooperation with the Vorarlberg Museum and the Vorarlberg Institute of Architecture.

- Starting point for becoming history
The Vorarlberg Architecture Archive was founded at a time when a first generation of architects of extraordinary importance to the region was becoming history. This refers to the loose group of planners - Hans Purin, the C4 group, Leopold Kaufmann and Jakob Albrecht - who began to provide architectural answers to the questions of their time in the early 1960s with consistent and independent interpretations of modernism. The conciseness of their work, the consistency in developing objective, intelligent architecture for the location, creating standards in architectural practice and a network of reference objects, which can be seen as the basis of a development that has been lasting now for 60 years. They were also effective as comrades-in-arms, colleagues, advisors and employers for the following "Baukünstler" since the 1980s. In 2003, their importance was recognized by the exhibition and publication "Constructive Provocation", and in 2007, on the occasion of the 100th anniversary of the Central Association of Architects, they were honoured as honorary members. This made them "father figures of the Vorarlberg family of architects" and brought them to the attention of the general public. However, this latent reality is fleeting and is constantly becoming historical.

- Development of the aav
The impulse to establish the Vorarlberg Architecture Archive arose in 2010 from the sudden death of Hans Purin and the realization that not only had a witty and comprehensively educated interlocutor been lost, but also that a specific institution was needed in Vorarlberg to systematically and scientifically preserve such a legacy. The idea of centralizing architectural research stands in contrast to the realization that the physical distance between the archive and the work is a fundamental obstacle to the reception of this architecture. In the search for a suitable facility for such an archive the appointment of a new director and the reorganization of the Vorarlberg State Museum - now the "Vorarlberg Museum" - under Dr. Andreas Rudigier provided the impetus for collaboration and the founding of this institution. The profound environment and at the same time the repositioning of the museum provided an excellent framework for such an archive. This is how the architecture archive came into being as an institution for the Vorarlberg Museum. The proximity to the buildings, as an indispensable component of research, was consciously chosen, as was the integration into the state museum, in order to address the viral link between building culture and other cultural forms and the history of the state. A commitment to the topos, to the idea of the region and at the same time a commitment to continuous networking with the "outside world"; both exemplary for architecture in Vorarlberg.

Robert Fabach, Bregenz/Wien, 2015/2024

Publication with support and/or contributions by the aav/vm:


Einblick in 60 Jahre Gestaltung: Architektur, Design, Objekt
Hrsg.: vorarlberg museum, vorarlberger architekturinstitut, quadrart
Dornbirn 2024

Further information:

Responsible for the content of this website:

mag.arch. Robert Fabach
Rotensterngasse 15a/5
A 1020 Vienna

T +43 699 174 76625

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