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Young German architects #1: Stephan Rauch

5 min read

The young Munich-based architect Stephan Rauch advocates clear outlines, compact design and energy efficiency with minimal use of technology.

Gruenwald House Room Inside with withe Walls

In keeping with these principles, he has already created a small, but remarkable oeuvre of private residences – quite a success story for a German architect aged around 40, for in Germany the young often find it difficult to secure good orders and attractive building projects.

For Rauch, who has an additional qualification as climate design specialist, resource- and energy-saving building design comes naturally. But instead of promoting complex high-tech solutions, he prefers to rely on minimalist design. “Build compactly and simultaneously create complex interiors“ is his motto.

An excellent example is “Haus Moorenweis“, a duplex house in the greater Munich area featuring clear outlines and the masterly implementation of a gabled roof. The main purpose of the variations in roof pitch on the mirror-inverted house halves is not so much formal aesthetics, but rather an optimised floor plan design. In this way, a greater ceiling height for the staircases is gained behind the wooden façade, and a split-level interior design landscape can be created.

Black Moorenweis House
Black Moorenweis House
Moorenweis House Room inside with withe Walls
Moorenweis House Room inside

According to Rauch, a successful project is one which astonishes clients. The architect has also accomplished this with “Haus Grünwald”, where a detached house from the 1960s was extended by adding a concrete cube. The gallery ceiling of the extension was suspended from the concrete roof via the wall panels. In this way it became possible to dispense with additional pillars in the spacious room on the ground floor – which came as a positive surprise to the owners.

House with concrete facade
© Florian Holzherr
House with concrete walls
© Florian Holzherr

By using multilayered, heat-insulated and prefabricated concrete elements, extremely large uninterrupted face concrete surface areas were achieved, without the horizontal joints normally visible on prefab elements. Moreover, a horizontal pouring process on steel tables gives the prefab elements an extremely smooth, homogeneous surface. According to Rauch, concrete is a fascinating material. He actually regrets that this material still has a certain image associated with the construction of industrial buildings and bridges in Germany. In the case of Haus Grünwald, he has shown that it is possible to create an elegant, clean and harmonious aesthetic by combining clean elements, such as the extremely smooth floor made of jointless poured epoxy resin.

We can look forward to his next projects with anticipation. The oeuvre of Stephan Rauch has already attracted attention. In 2016 he won the “max40 – Young Architects“ award, which was then granted by five BDA state associations for the very first time.


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