An honors graduate of the Staatliche Bauschule School of Architecture in Cologne in , his design education in Germany was influenced by the Deutsche Werkbund school, a plastic arts program developed by German architect Herman Muthesius. Klumb emigrated to the United States in , at the age of They had two children, Peter born , and Richard born Klumb became a US citizen in
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An honors graduate of the Staatliche Bauschule School of Architecture in Cologne in , his design education in Germany was influenced by the Deutsche Werkbund school, a plastic arts program developed by German architect Herman Muthesius. Klumb emigrated to the United States in , at the age of They had two children, Peter born , and Richard born Klumb became a US citizen in In he established along with Louis I.
Kahn and Louis Metzinger, the Cooperative Planners firm in Philadelphia concentrating in the design of low-cost pre-fabricated houses. Career and later life Having met New Deal brain trust planner Rexford Tugwell in the late s, he was invited to move to Puerto Rico in and collaborate in the design of post-war modern Puerto Rico. A nomad for the first four decades of his life, he left Los Angeles on February 24, , his 39th birthday and finally found a "home" in San Juan, Puerto Rico and devoted most of the rest of his life to building up Puerto Rico.
As a member of the Design Committee, he was responsible for the design of multiple government structures throughout Puerto Rico. Shortly after his arrival in Puerto Rico, Klumb founded, along with Taliesen fellow, Stephen Arneson, the ARKLU furniture factory, which produced distinctive tropical furniture utilizing native woods, leather and cord.
Klumb also incorporated this tropical style of architecture in the design of his own home, Casa Klumb , which he began building in His most important work on the island was the campus master plan for the University of Puerto Rico from to , as well as the design of many of its buildings.
His public sector work attracted many private commissions, including private residences, churches and commercial buildings. Later in life, his design work concentrated in work for several emerging pharmaceutical firms, including Eli Lilly, Parke-Davis, Baxter, Roche, Searle and Travenol. In , he established the Klumb Foundation. Throughout his life, Klumb mentored young Puerto Rican architects as well as talented young architects from the US mainland.
Chronology Born on February 24 in Cologne, Germany. From January to May, works at the Ocatilla camp in Arizona. In August, marries Else Schmidt. In November, returns to the United States. Forms partnership with Stephen Arneson. Kahn on several projects.
Obtains US citizenship. Begins working with the Public Works Design Committee. Begins private practice; firm known as The Office of Henry Klumb. Takes part in the design competition for the Caribe Hilton.
Begins designs for the Ciba-Geigy pharmaceutical plant in New Jersey.
Henry Klumb House
Renowned German-born architect Henry Klumb, a former student and chief draftsman of Frank Lloyd Wright, designed the home for himself after he settled in Puerto Rico in at the behest of Governor Rexford Tugwell. For his own dwelling, the architect modified a typical nineteenth-century hacienda, codifying his philosophy of architecture and his ideas regarding modern tropical living. Klumb removed most of the outer walls, opening the house and creating a direct relationship between interior and exterior. In the surrounding landscape, a lush oasis within a dense urban environment, Klumb created a private botanical garden that protected the living space from direct sun and rain. The house and grounds were listed on the National Register of Historic Places in , yet, after a hurricane in destroyed the kitchen and damaged the roof, the house was only minimally maintained. As a result, it has suffered significant deterioration and requires urgent conservation measures.
Henry Klumb: Two Buildings, One Idea
As expected, I have slightly edited the text. It celebrated the 60th anniversary of the exhibition that MoMA organized in about Latin American architecture built by To reduce the architectural production of a quarter of a century in Puerto Rico to one surrounded by exuberant nature, or open to natural ventilation is to limit architectural ideas to mere tropical iconography. Whether or not intentional, it is somewhat offensive that peers do not acknowledge architectural sophistication in the Antillean Region. With the piers, as designed and built, Klumb recognized the religious commitment of the Order of Preachers, also known as the Dominican Order, to amplify and promote the spread of the gospel.