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Lorenz Orendi


Department of Art History


PhD student

in sub-project R4
Spaces of Otium: Theory, Practice and Empirical Evidence of Modern and Contemporary Architecture

Dissertation project

Spaces of leisure in modern and contemporary architecture in theory, practical experience and empiricism

The thesis aimed to analyse a representative selection of modern and contemporary structures that are considered to be ‘classical’ architectural spaces of recreation and leisure: oratories, museums, baths and libraries. They were designed by architects, whose key objective was to create a specific atmosphere of repose, contemplation, reflection and serenity. Their external conditions may provide room to enable visitors to experience practices of leisure, placid idleness or contemplation.
Also, considering the accelerating modern lifestyle and the connected feeling of loss of personal space and decline of identity, leading aspects like atmosphere, leisure, repose, serenity, building material, tension, „Zeichenlosigkeit“, poesy, architectural guidance, haptics, experience and texture were analysed. The dissertation’s main interest was to establish how these new key objectives, which were debated and reflected on by architects, critics, historians, philosophers and human geographers over the last decades are able to create effective framework conditions for leisure or Muße in practical contexts. Based on this approach, the project identified the conditions and ideological principles of these contemporary architectural positions. What is more, it pointed out their specific impact on the current discourse that is characterized by concepts of deceleration, mindfulness and the creation of affective atmospheres through architecture. In order to broaden the understanding of the impact of architectural spaces of leisure or the German term "Muße", the project collaborated with sub-project R5 in developing an empirical tool to evaluate further visitor information on the use of these spaces.

Publications relevant to the project

Search for publications in the CRC's bibliography