A princely pleasure garden with a spectacular greenhouse
Karlsruhe Botanical Gardens
Image: Monument to Heinrich Hübsch, who redesigned the Karlsruhe Botanical Gardens in the early 19th century

A CRITICAL ARCHITECTHeinrich Hübsch

He was a student of Friedrich Weinbrenner and later one of his critics. Heinrich Hübsch (1795–1863) built all of the buildings in the immediate area of the botanical gardens, from the art gallery and conservatories to the now destroyed court theater.

HOW WAS HÜBSCH SIGNIFICANT FOR BADEN?

Heinrich Hübsch was the director of the Karlsruhe school of architecture between 1832 and 1854 and the court building director as of 1842. In both positions, he followed in the footsteps of his teacher, Friedrich Weinbrenner. His buildings can be found in Baden and the surrounding area, for example, the front wing of the Staatliche Kunsthalle and the orangeries in Karlsruhe, the pump room in Baden-Baden and the western facade of the Speyer Cathedral. His court theater, once also located in the botanical gardens, was replaced with the Federal Constitutional Court after World War II.

Image: Close-up of the gatehouse facade at the Karlsruhe Botanical Gardens

Medallion on the facade of the gatehouse.

WHICH STYLE DID HEINRICH HÜBSCH REPRESENT?

Hübsch made national headlines. His work "In What Style Should We Build?" was much discussed. In it, he turned away from 19th-century Classicism, and thus against Weinbrenner's architecture. He promoted a new style in which inspiration could be taken from the past. In his opinion, those wishing to create buildings of the same quality found in antiquity would have to take into account the available construction materials, technical advancements and limitations of the period.

WHAT SETS HIS BUILDINGS APART?

Hübsch developed his own style and called it "Rundbogenstil" (round arch style), which constituted a distinct progression of the Romantic style. He played with materials: The colorful striped pattern in the brick facade of the gatehouse is typical of his style, as is the use of individual terracotta or glazed earthenware elements. It is these elements that make his work so alluring. A monument to him was placed at the edge of the botanical gardens, between the central building, the art gallery and the children's gallery.

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