Former Textile Store of Weichmann, currently: bank, Gliwice
Narodowy Instytut Dziedzictwa pl

Zdjęcie panoramiczne tej lokalizacji jest niedostępne.

Former Textile Store of Weichmann, currently: bank

Gliwice

photo

One of the most important examples of modernist architecture in Upper Silesia, combining functionalist and expressionist element, designed by one of the leading German architects and department store creators of the 1st half of the 20th century, Erich Mendelsohn. At the same time, it is the first of the numerous department stores designed by Mendelsohn, valuable due to its significant influence on the architecture of later department stores.

History

The Textile Store of Erwin Weichmann (Seidenhaus Weichamann) was built in the years 1921-1922 at a prestigious trading street, Wilhelmstrasse (currently: Zwycięstwa Street). The building was constructed by the company of Richard Koban according to a design by a renowned German architect, Erich Mendelsohn, in cooperation with Richard Neutra, who worked in Mendelsohn’s studio in Berlin at that time. It is assumed that the only author of the design was Mendelsohn, whereas Neutra’s role was to provide architectural supervision or to make the necessary corrections during the construction works. The structure was designed so at to contain a two-storeyed textile store (on the ground and first floors), offices (on the ground floor), a mail order and wholesale department (in the basement), workers’ apartments (in the tower, on the second floor, and in the basement), and workshops, garages, and a boiler room (in the basement). After Weichmann left for America in 1932, the store became the property of Max Altgassen. In the post-war period, the building contained sales and service outlets; currently, it houses a bank.

Description

The former Textile Store of Weichmann is situated in the centre of Gliwice, on a narrow, corner plot of land at the intersection of the representative Zwycięstwa Street and Przyjaźni Avenue, surrounded by residential and sales and service buildings from the late 19th century and early 20th century.

The building is made of reinforced concrete and brick. It combines expressionist and functionalist features, including the aesthetics of the Dutch movement De Stijl. Built on an irregularly-shaped floor plan approximating an elongated rectangle, oriented horizontally, the structure, comprising three storeys and a basement, is covered with flat roofs, with a characteristic “shift” of the two upper storeys towards the east. The building reaches different heights in different sections. The two upper storeys are surmounted by a short structure on the west side.

The façades facing Zwycięstwa Street and Przyjaźni Avenue have windows at the same level. The main entrance to the store is located in the receded corner of the building. Both façades are decorated with tripartite string courses, projecting forward a considerable length, a receded ground floor level, divided by means of evenly spaced piers and display windows, and horizontal rows of windows, of which the lower ones are framed by string courses and the upper ones form smooth planes with the walls.

The interior of the ground floor and the first floor, originally intended to contain store rooms, is divided by simple, evenly spaced piers supporting the ceilings. In the back part, there are offices and a staircase. The interior of the second floor and the tower used to be divided into small apartments for shop assistants.

Limited access to the historic monument. The building currently houses a bank.

compiled by Agnieszka Olczyk, Regional Branch of the National Heritage Board of Poland in Katowice, 27-10-2014.

Bibliography

  • Chojecka E., Gorzelik J., Kozina I., Szczypka-Gwiazda B., Sztuka Górnego Śląska od średniowiecza do końca XX wieku, Katowice 2009, s. 351.
  • Jodliński L., Dom tekstylny Weichmanna w Gliwicach, Gliwice 1994.
  • Zabytki Sztuki w Polsce. Śląsk, red. S. Brzezicki, C. Nielsen, Warszawa 2006, s. 264-265.

General information

  • Type: public building
  • Chronology: 1921-1922
  • Form of protection: register of monuments
  • Address: Zwycięstwa 37, Gliwice
  • Location: Voivodeship śląskie, district Gliwice, commune Gliwice
  • Source: National Heritage Board of Poland

Licence:

report issue with this site

Geoportal Map

Google Map

See also in this area