david altrath captures historical charm of 125-year-old hamburg town hall in germany

david altrath captures historical charm of 125-year-old hamburg town hall in germany

Rathaus Hamburg captured by David Altrath

 

In his latest photo series, David Altrath captures the historic City Hall of Hamburg, Germany. Celebrating the building’s 125th anniversary, the Hamburg-based photographer documents the impressive interiors with their grand hallways, intricate coffered ceilings, antique furniture, and lavish decorations. 

 

Built from 1886 to 1897, Hamburg City Hall dominates the center of the German city with its neo-Gothic/Neo-Renaissance architecture. The structure emerges as a tall sandstone building with a bold facade flanked by 20 statues depicting emperors. Inside, the town hall incorporates elements of the historical style, making it one of the few surviving buildings of historicism.

david altrath captures historical charm of 125-year-old hamburg town hall in germany
Rathaus Hamburg dominates Hamburg with its neo-Gothic/Neo-Renaissance architecture | all images courtesy of David Altrath

 

 

documenting the lavishly decorated interiors

 

For more than 50 years after the Great Fire of 1842, the people of Hamburg had to make do without a city hall, until October 26, 1897, when the new building was finally inaugurated. Its refined architecture has helped make the building a popular tourist attraction: the City Hall stands 112 meters tall and and its exterior is decorated with saints, kings, and virtues. The ornate wrought-iron gate leads into the entrance hall, which is supported by 16 sandstone columns painted with 68 portraits of deserving Hamburg citizens. The staircase was made of Sardinian marble and represents the course of human life.

 

Built during a period of wealth and prosperity, the look of the Hamburg Rathaus was intended to express this wealth and also the independence of the State of Hamburg. The awe-striking interior is heavily adorned with marble columns, pressed leather coverings, intricate wooden carvings, gigantic murals, and lush chandeliers. Over a period of two years, David Altrath documented these impressive interiors of the huge building complex, which covers an area of 5,400 sqm and features houses the Senate, the Parliament, the Finance Department, the State Archives, and other authorities under one roof.

david altrath captures historical charm of 125-year-old hamburg town hall in germany
inside, the town hall incorporates elements of the historical style

david altrath captures historical charm of 125-year-old hamburg town hall in germany
the entry hall features a grand marble staircase

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marble columns and intricate murals can be found throughout the city hall

david altrath captures historical charm of 125-year-old hamburg town hall in germany
larger-than-life paintings decorate many of the rooms

david-altrath-historic125-year-old-hamburg-town-hall-germany-designboom-full

intricate coffered ceilings and lush chandeliers

david altrath captures historical charm of 125-year-old hamburg town hall in germany
wooden carvings decorate the walls and ceilings too

david-altrath-historic125-year-old-hamburg-town-hall-germany-designboom-full-02

the town hall houses the Senate, the Parliament, the Finance Department, the State Archives under one roof

david altrath captures historical charm of 125-year-old hamburg town hall in germany
the photography series celebrates the building’s 125th anniversary

david altrath captures historical charm of 125-year-old hamburg town hall in germany

david-altrath-historic125-year-old-hamburg-town-hall-germany-designboom-full-04

david altrath captures historical charm of 125-year-old hamburg town hall in germany
antiqued furniture complete the awe-inspiring interiors

david altrath captures historical charm of 125-year-old hamburg town hall in germany

david altrath captures historical charm of 125-year-old hamburg town hall in germany
David Altrath documents the impressive interiors with their coffered ceilings, and impressive decorations

david altrath captures historical charm of 125-year-old hamburg town hall in germany  

 

project info: 

 

name: Rathaus Hamburg
photography: David Altrath

ARCHITECTURAL PHOTOGRAPHY (262)

ARCHITECTURE IN GERMANY (267)

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