Fabulous F.A.B. - the rediscovery of the legendary architect Fritz August Breuhaus de Groot
Living in a "Breuhaus" has always been a dulcet and discrete attestation of highest social and financial standing and a most exquisite taste to all those who are as privileged as to reside in or even own such building. Even today, many owners and residents of an estate created by the Breuhaus studio know that their home was designed by one of the most productive and prominent German architects of mansions and country houses in the first half of the 20th century.
It is all the more astonishing that Breuhaus - since his death in 1960 increasingly neglected in professional circles - merely now gets back into the focus of research on architectural history.
This Website is supposed to intensify research on the life and the life's work of the architect Breuhaus - who from our point of view has not yet been recognized as he should - and to make the latest results of our research accessible to an interested audience.
And this is only a first step: The medium-term target of our research is a comprehensive publication on the architect's life and his work. As opposite to the object-related approach, popular for most of the architectural monographs, our particular attention is paid to all persons who are involved in initializing, designing and conducting architecture as well as the ones working or living in it. Architecture and design are not only emerging from a creative and a technical process, but also from a social communication process. It is undeniable, that Breuhaus was a master of communication and "social networking". His way of discovering, developing and benefit from these factors of success shall be analyzed through all phases of his working life, as far as this still may be asked from sources or contemporary witnesses today.
In this sense we hope to release an as vivid as inspiring communication between all those who are currently involved in the phenomenon Breuhaus or who had been engaged into this subject in the past. At this point, architectural historians, monument conservators, connoisseurs of his arts-and-crafts, today's owners and residents of numerous mansions and country houses by Breuhaus are as well invited to our forum as his former pupils, cooperators and contemporary witnesses having known Breuhaus.Although tracing back Breuhaus since a couple of years with the result of producing an impressive catalogue of his architectural oeuvre with not less than about 400 buildings and projects, we still have a considerable amount of research ahead:
In consideration of clients' wishes to withhold their names, Breuhaus mostly refrained from mentioning names and places in the numerous publications on his work. Due to this situation, the researcher often needs a detective's sense. Nevertheless we succeeded in localizing about 50% of Breuhaus' renowned buildings and plans and in finding out the respective owners of these buildings. The owners' catalogue therefore reads as a German - sometimes also European or transoceanic - "who is who".
Today, Fritz August Breuhaus de Groot is one of the most brilliant personalities of his time in the field of architecture. His colorful and creative life is wreathed in numerous, partly very extravagant myths and legends. "Fabulous FAB" himself - known for his lifelong feeble for presenting him and his oeuvre a great many times and with great verve to the public - is supposed to have contributed a great deal to the birth of such myths: his claim to be originally born from the Dutch painters' dynasty Breuhaus de Groot is not proven till today. The same is true of his provenance from a Malaysian female temple dancer, a circumstance he once conveyed to a chronicler in the fifties. Born as Friedrich August Breuhaus in 1883, bon vivant and fond of travelling, the son of a dental technician from the town of Solingen in the German region Bergisches Land got used to being successful right from the beginning of his highly productive career as an architect, interior designer and artisan. He never disliked myths and legends entwining around his person.
The "legend Breuhaus" is a phenomenon exceedingly surpassing the architect's vast oeuvre and his arts-and crafts. His model for life possibly is the most exquisite and thrilling thing, the German "star architect" ever outlined.
During winter 2006, we will present on this Website an interim catalogue of the architectural oeuvre as well as further current information on Breuhaus' biography. Therefore please visit us again.
We look forward to hearing from you soon and are grateful for your questions, suggestions and changing proposals.
In November 2006