Film Die Frankfurter Küche

Die Frankfurter Küche © architektur-aktuell/I. Maunu-Kocian

Thu, 09/26/2019

6:00 PM

Goethe-Institut Chicago

100 Years of Bauhaus

Margarete "Grete" Schütte-Lihotzky (January 23, 1897, Wien – January 18, 2000) was the first female Austrian architect and a communist activist in the German resistance to Nazism. She is mostly remembered today for designing the so-called Frankfurt kitchen.

As part of the New Frankfurt-project Schütte-Lihotzky created the Frankfurt Kitchen in 1926, which was the prototype of the built-in kitchen now prevalent in the western world. Based on the scientific research by U.S. management expert Frederick Winslow Taylor and her own research, Lihotzky used a railroad dining car kitchen as her model to design a "housewife's laboratory" using a minimum of space but offering a maximum of comfort and equipment to the working mother. The Frankfurt City Council eventually installed 10,000 of her mass-produced, prefabricated kitchens in newly built working-class apartments.

On her 100th birthday Schütte-Lihotzky commented "You'll be surprised that, before I conceived the Frankfurt Kitchen in 1926, I never cooked myself. At home in Vienna my mother cooked, in Frankfurt I went to the Wirtshaus [restaurant/pub]. I designed the kitchen as an architect, not as a housewife."