Camillo and Siegfried Sitte – a father-son relationship in urban planning theory

Kubin, Stefan Johannes and Psenner, Angelika; (2022) Camillo and Siegfried Sitte – a father-son relationship in urban planning theory. In: Annual Conference Proceedings of the XXVIII International Seminar on Urban Form. University of Strathclyde Publishing, Glasgow, pp. 79-87. ISBN 9781914241161

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Siegfried Sitte (1876–1945) is a little-known character in the architectural scene of the late 19th and first half of the 20th century. His work is overshadowed by his father's oeuvre: Camillo Sitte's pamphlet "Der Städtebau nach seinen künstlerischen Grundsätzen" published in 1899, which clearly is a milestone in urban theory. But until now, little light has been shed on how close the relationship between Camillo and his son Siegfried actually was. The research is based on a hitherto unpublished collection of materials; which is currently being processed as part of the dissertation on an apparently planned-but not compiled-second volume of Camillo Sitte's "Der Städtebau nach seinen wissenschaftlichen Grundsätzen". Studying this new collection allows us to realise on the extent to which the work of the two generations of architects is intertwined and how far the father's unfinished plans had an influence on the son's works. The first-born son of Camillo Sitte followed his father in his profession-not only as a planner but also as a teacher at the so called "Staatsgewerbeschule". The detailed study of the Sitte generation's heritage in the archives of TU Wien clearly provides evidence that Siegfried worked in his father's studio and continued or completed the urban planning and architectural projects after his father's sudden death in 1903. Siegfried himself later engaged intensively in the theoretical foundations of urban planning and published several writings on the subject. However, his own main work, "Das Wirtschaftsbild", only appeared posthumously. In it, he took up themes that his father had already dealt with and that he evidently had wanted to discuss in the second volume. Thus, this article is the first to explore the relationship between father and son in terms of the theoretical debate on urban planning by giving insights to the new findings on the topics Siegfried's father had already in mind to discuss in his sequel.

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