ode to brutalism: david altrath captures concrete landscape of HAW university in germany

ode to brutalism: david altrath captures concrete landscape of HAW university in germany

David Altrath photographs HAW Bergedorf in Hamburg, Germany

 

German photographer David Altrath extends his architectural exploration, this time capturing the HAW Bergedorf Faculty of Life Science in Hamburg, Germany. Constructed in 1972 and designed by architects Graaf + Schweger, the university campus stands as a striking embodiment of Brutalist architecture. The juxtaposition of unadorned concrete walls, pillars, coffered ceilings, and staircase sculptures harmonizes with lively bursts of color, creating a unified and rugged landscape.

ode to brutalism: david altrath captures concrete landscape of HAW university in germany
the HAW Bergedorf Faculty of Life Science in Hamburg | all images courtesy of David Altrath

 

 

the uncertain future of Fachhochschule Bergedorf 

 

In his latest project, David Altrath (find more here) photographs the distinct Brutalist style of the building which is likened to a colossal spaceship fleet. The vast entrance hall boasts raw concrete walls, pillars, coffered ceilings, and staircase structures. Red, blue, and yellow stripes and signage cover the rough surfaces, adding a splash of color to the interior. The architects demonstrated meticulous attention to detail, seamlessly integrating metallic handrails into machined slots in the concrete staircase railings.

 

Despite its architectural significance and preservation of the original state, Fachhochschule Bergedorf faces an uncertain future. Plans to relocate the university to Oberbillwerder aren’t driven by functional inadequacies but by the perceived infeasibility of an energy-efficient renovation. This decision has drawn criticism from preservationists, including the Hamburg Heritage Association, advocating for exploring alternative uses for the building and upholding the public sector’s role in sustainable urban development.

ode to brutalism: david altrath captures concrete landscape of HAW university in germany
red, blue, and yellow stripes add a splash of color to the concrete interior

ode to brutalism: david altrath captures concrete landscape of HAW university in germany
vibrant seating with organic curves contrast against the rough surfaces

ode to brutalism: david altrath captures concrete landscape of HAW university in germany
coffered ceilings and staircase sculptures form the brutalist interior

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ode to brutalism: david altrath captures concrete landscape of HAW university in germany
a bright red ATM adorns a corner of the university

ode to brutalism: david altrath captures concrete landscape of HAW university in germany
the structure’s distinctive architectural style is evident in David Altrath’s photography

ode to brutalism: david altrath captures concrete landscape of HAW university in germany
wooden seating in the auditorium ode to brutalism: david altrath captures concrete landscape of HAW university in germany

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ode to brutalism: david altrath captures concrete landscape of HAW university in germany  ode to brutalism: david altrath captures concrete landscape of HAW university in germany

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circular windows adorn the rough concrete walls

ode to brutalism: david altrath captures concrete landscape of HAW university in germany

ode to brutalism: david altrath captures concrete landscape of HAW university in germany
the vast entrance hall boasts raw concrete walls and pillars

ode to brutalism: david altrath captures concrete landscape of HAW university in germany
the university hall in the afternoon

 

 

project info: 

 

name: HAW Bergedorf
architect: Graaf + Schweger
location: Hamburg, Germany
photography: David Altrath

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