The output of the PAUHOF Architekten Agency encompasses city-planning, architecture, installations, exhibitions, and national and international competitions, with no hierarchy among the various fields. Between projects (Synthese Museum, 1987; Erste Bank Campus, in Vienna, 2008) and completed works (Metal Workshop, Grammastetten, 1991; House-M, 1992; House-P, 1992-98; House-SZ, 2008, and between artistic installations and exhibition sets, the architects explore the paths of a critical minimalism, and a fundamental abstraction. In an approach to the modernist vocabulary which is at once spare and intense, PAUHOF develops a plastic/visual body of work based on an elementary volumetry, where the components of the architectural project are re-used, exaggerated, and pushed to their limits, like the “flattened” volume of the Austrian pavilion at Expo’92 in Seville (1990). In spite of its apparent rigidity, and its exclusively orthogonal tectonics, the architecture produced by PAUHOF develops complex and open forms, as in the project for the ST-House (2000) and that of the D-House at Brixen (2004). In many projects, we find what PAUHOF calls “implicit volume”, meaning a dialectic between the exterior volume and space in its open interiority. Exhibition activities are very much part and parcel of the production of the Austrian agency, and are an intrinsic factor of its strictly architectural design. Their installations, devised both for solo shows and for other artists, including Martin Kippenberger (Tiefes Kelchen, 1991), transpose the concepts of monumentality, void, interstice and scale by means of specific spatial arrangements, diagrams and collages. PAUHOF’s installations, whose rigorous continuity is established from one project to the next with systems of references, may thus be read as experiments close to contemporary art, or else as pieces of architecture in their own right.
Michael Hofstätter, born in 1953, and Wolfgang Pauzenberger, born in 1955, founded the PAUHOF Architekten Agency in 1986, in Linz and Vienna. Today, they have offices in Vienna, Linz, and Berlin. Their works have been very regularly exhibited since the early 1990s: PAUHOF – Wien at the Fondation pour l’Architecture in Brussels in 1995, Implied Volumes in Milan in 1996, Beyond the Minimal at the AA in London in 1998, ArchiLab in Orléans in 1999 and 2003, Trespassing – Konturen räumlichen Handels at the Vienna Secession in 2002, and Alfred Hitchcock & Pauhof: The Wrong House in Antwerp in 2007. Their work was also exhibited at the Venice Biennale in 2008 and 2010 (StadtSzenario als MetaModell).