Bernhard Hans Henry Scharoun (September 20th, 1893 – November 25th, 1972) was a German architect born in Bremen best known for designing the The Berliner Philharmonie. He was an important exponent of Organic architecture.
Scharoun was born in Bremen, German Empire. After passing his Abitur in Bremerhaven in 1912, Scharoun studied architecture at the Technical University of Berlin until 1914 (at the time called Königliche Technische Hochschule, the Royal Technical University of Berlin), but he did not complete his studies. He had already shown an interest in architecture during his school years. At the age of 16 he drafted his first designs, and at 18 he entered for the first time an architectural competition for the modernisation of a church in Bremerhaven. In 1914 he volunteered to serve in the First World War. After several years working freelance he started a professorship then in 1926 he entered the architects association Der Ring.
In 1927 Scharoun built a house in the Weissenhof Estate. He had responsibility at the end of the twenties for the development plan of a large housing estate, Siemensstadt, in Berlin
Second World War
During the Nazi era, Scharoun remained in Germany, whilst many of his friends and colleagues from the Glass Chain or Der Ring went abroad. In this time he only built a few family houses. In 1933 he built the Schminke house, which now publicly accessible, in the city of Löbau in Saxony. During the war, he was busy with reconstruction after bomb damage. He recorded his architectural ideas and visions secretly in numerous watercolors.
After the end of the Second World War, he found himself in a political no man's land as the division of the city was becoming apparent. In 1946 he became a professor at the faculty of architecture at the Technical University of Berlin. It was during this time that Scharoun was able to realize his architectural understanding, both ambitious and humanistic, in exemplary buildings - including Schminke House, the The Berliner Philharmonie, and the Berlin State Library.
Hans Scharoun died in Berlin in 1972, some of his later works were only finished after his death.
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