Hermann Baur

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Interior of the Don Bosco Church in Basel
Brother Klaus Church in Birsfelden
Church tower of Notre-Dame de la Prévoté in Moutier
New mother house church St. Vinzenz in the monastery Untermarchtal

Hermann Baur (born August 25, 1894 in Basel , † December 20, 1980 in Binningen ) was a Swiss architect . He is counted among the most important Swiss church architects of the 20th century.


Hermann Baur-Meyer (1894–1980), church architect, President of the Association of Swiss Architects.  Founding member of the magazine "Das Werk".  Grave in the Wolfgottesacker cemetery, Basel
Grave in the Wolfgottesacker cemetery , Basel

Baur was born the son of a master carpenter. After completing an apprenticeship with the Basel master builder Rudolf Linder from 1910 to 1917 , he did internship at the ETH Zurich from 1918 to 1919 with Karl Moser and Hans Bernoulli as well as with Fritz von Niederhäusern . From 1921 he was in Alsace , before taking over in 1927 in Basel with its own office independently made.

From 1938 to 1944 Baur was President of the Federation of Swiss Architects (BSA).

He was a co-founder of the magazine “Das Werk”, the joint organ of the BSA, the Swiss Werkbund (SWB) and the Swiss Art Association (SKV). From 1948 to 1958 he was president of the editorial board of the paper.

From 1959 to 1964 Hermann Baur gave guest lectures at the ETH Zurich.


According to Baur's plans, several public buildings and housing developments that are still significant today in the cityscape of Basel were created.

In addition, Hermann Baur was particularly responsible for over 30 new Catholic church buildings. Inspired by Le Corbusier's Notre Dame du Haut Church in Ronchamp , Baur developed a lively church space instead of the conventional rectangular floor plan using a shell construction , which also conveys a new, modern, content-related statement. “The free, three-dimensional design creates a strong contrast to the surrounding buildings. The 'completely different', the sacred part of the church building, can also be felt from the outside. But what was done out there had to be a response to the spiritual situation and its demands: The aim was to create an Ekklesia, a meeting room in which the faithful were to gather in community to celebrate the liturgy. " (Hermann Baur on the Brother Klaus Church in Birsfelden)

Buildings (selection)


  • Carmen Humbel: Hermann Baur (1894–1980): an architect with ethical convictions on the move to modernity , Diss. ETH Zurich, 1997.
  • HA Brütsch, A. Hofmann, C. Humbel, et al. (Articles): Hermann Baur 1894–1980: Architecture and Planning in Times of Change. An exhibition in the Architekturmuseum Basel from August 27 to October 30, 1994 . Architekturmuseum Basel, 1994, ISBN 978-3-905065-24-4 .
  • Plan + construction. 50 years of architecture using the example of Hermann Baur (October 17 – November 16, 1975) (volume accompanying the exhibition at the Gewerbemuseum / Museum für Gestaltung), Basel 1975.
  • New Swiss church buildings ( Werner Max Moser , Hermann Baur, Fritz Metzger ) . In: Bauen und Wohnen 12/1949, special issue on reconstruction - church building , Otto Maier Verlag, Ravensburg 1949.
  • Gonsalve Mainberger (translation): Church buildings by Hermann Baur and Fritz Metzger , (Sacred Art, Vol. 2), Würzburg: Echter-Verlag, 1956 (also Zurich: NZN Buchverlag, 1956).
  • Hermann Baur: Structural development and changes on the Bruderholz. In: Basler Stadtbuch 1968 , Vol. 88, pp. 296–304.
  • Fabrizio Brentini: Trends in Modern Architecture. For a unity of architecture and art. On the hundredth birthday of Hermann Baur (1894-1980). In: Basler Stadtbuch 1994 , vol. 115, pp. 163–167.

Web links

Commons : Hermann Baur  - Collection of images, videos and audio files