Discover Germany, Issue 92, April 2022

Page 88

Discover Germany


Special Theme


Top Austrian Architects

38 cones blended into each other form the Austrian EXPO pavilion. Photo: EXPO 2020 – dany eid

FOR HEART AND MIND – ARCHITECTURE AS EXPERIENCE Vienna-based querkraft architects value both the rational and the emotional factor in their projects, thus creating added value for future inhabitants.

who have realised the added value for employees that their projects entail.



To explain the central idea of their company philosophy, querkraft architekten refer to ‘poetical pragmatism’. While looking for the most transparent, uncomplicated solution, optimising each project to a point when it can’t be optimised any further, they never forget about the emotional component: “It is only the successful combination of heart and mind which leaves us satisfied in the end.” querkraft architects thus foster an architecture which is both lively and livable. By designing buildings that create added value for the inhabitants, they realise emotionally sustainable projects. Founded in 1998, the team around Gerd Erhartt, Peter Sapp, Jakob Dunkl, started 88


Issue 92


April 2022

out with conversion projects. A first milestone came in 2004 with the Adidas Brand Center in Herzogenaurach, Germany. Today, green high-rise projects are on the agenda, showing how the projects have grown along with the office. The overall wish at querkraft architekten has stayed the same – favouring the implementation of their design ideas over (too much) theory: “No matter how big or small a project, people should be able to experience our architecture.” While their client list grows naturally by way of successful competition entries, querkraft architekten currently also receive more and more direct commissions from companies

querkraft architekten like to dream big. Nothing would thrill them more than seeing Vienna turned into a ‘slow city’: two million trees for two million people – while reducing individual transport to a minimum. Their recent projects clearly mirror this keen interest in environment and humanity. The inner-city, car-free IKEA by the Vienna west station, for example, or the Austrian EXPO pavilion for the Dubai world fair. To keep moving on that same scale in 2022 would make querkraft architekten happy enough: “Growth isn’t everything – we want to create quality architecture which is loved and experienced by people, thus becoming emotionally sustainable.”