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Felix Augenfeld architectural records and papers, 1910-1972.

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Preferred Citation

Felix Augenfeld architectural records and papers. Dept. of Drawings & Archives, Avery Architectural and Fine Arts Library. Columbia University, New York, N.Y.

COinS Metadata available (e.g., for Zotero).

Summary Information

Abstract

Felix Augenfeld (1893-1984) was a Viennese architect and designer active in Austria, Czechoslovakia, and Croatia prior to 1938, in London from 1938-1939, and in the United States from 1939 until his death. His work consists primarily of residential projects, including apartments, weekend homes, beach houses, and residences, and includes both architecture and interior design. Like other architect-designers of the time, his work included original furniture and textiles to create a cohesive design experience. Augenfeld’s design for Sigmund Freud’s desk chair, now at the Freud Museum in London is probably his most well-known work. This collection contains photographs, drawings, blueprints, and sketches of over eighty of Augenfeld’s projects with the majority focused on his years in America but with a substantial photograph collection that illustrates his Viennese work. Beyond project records, the collection includes a number of Augenfeld’s professional papers that contextualize his work through his research material, portfolios, and scrapbooks, and his personal papers which include his own writings, poetry, correspondence, and photographs of friends and family.

At a Glance

CLIO record: View CLIO record
Creator(s):Augenfeld, Felix, 1893-1984.
Title:Felix Augenfeld architectural records and papers, 1910-1972.
Physical description:approx. 3 linear feet (in 7 manuscript boxes, 3 oversize boxes, 23 rolls, and 2 drawers) 1,236+ photographs 1,154+ drawings 205 negatives 35 textiles
Language(s):In English and German
Access: This collection is available for use by qualified readers by appointment in the Dept. of Archives & Drawings' Reading Room, Avery Architectural and Fine Arts Library at Columbia University. The majority of this collection is maintained in off-site storage and must retrieved with advance notification. For further information and to make an appointment to use this collection, please call (212) 854-4110 or email avery-drawings@libraries.columbia.edu.  More information »

Arrangement

Arrangement

The collection is made up of three series:

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Description

Scope and Content

Series I: Project Records

Arranged chronologically by project, from Augenfeld’s years in Vienna with Karl Hofmann as Hofmann & Augenfeld (1924 - 1938) to his work in the United States, primarily in New York City, but also extending to the Virgin Islands and Havana. The projects within this section include architecture, interior design, and furniture design (for Henredon Modern and the American Chair Company, as well as private furniture commissions). The series is composed primarily of photographs, plans, and perspectives, but also include blueprints, negatives, and occasionally correspondence. The largest collection of material in this series documents the Joseph and Muriel Buttinger Residence & Research Library at 10 East 87th Street in New York City.

Projects listed prior to 1938 are the work of Augenfeld and co-creator, Karl Hofmann. Any additional creators beyond Hofmann are listed, and most notably include Oskar Strnad and Walter Sobotka. However, Augenfeld’s career in New York is largely an independent practice and additional creators are only occasionally listed, such as Anna de Carmel (Anna Augenfeld), or Jan Hird Pokorny.

Series II: Professional Papers

Consists of documents, articles, and images that Augenfeld used as reference or inspiration, as well as scrapbooks that contain articles and clippings on his work, and his portfolios. This material reflects a more general view of his work or process, instead of the project-focused approach of Series I: Project Records. This series also includes a collection of original textiles (both hand painted and commercially printed) that were designed by Augenfeld for specific projects or for general retail. Some of these textiles can be found in project photos of the finished interiors.

Series III: Personal Papers

Consists of photographs, correspondence, writings, personal documents, and awards. Of particular interest is the correspondence regarding Freud’s chair design, as well as a brief correspondence regarding Augenfeld’s friendship with Richard Neutra. The largest part of this series consists of photographs, which are grouped with regard to original order and by subject.

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Using the Collection

Access Restrictions

 This collection is available for use by qualified readers by appointment in the Dept. of Archives & Drawings' Reading Room, Avery Architectural and Fine Arts Library at Columbia University. The majority of this collection is maintained in off-site storage and must retrieved with advance notification. For further information and to make an appointment to use this collection, please call (212) 854-4110 or email avery-drawings@libraries.columbia.edu.

Restrictions on Use

Columbia University is providing access to the materials in the Library's collections solely for noncommercial educational and research purposes. The unauthorized use, including, but not limited to, publication of the materials without the prior written permission of Columbia University is strictly prohibited. All inquiries regarding permission to publish should be submitted in writing to the Director, Avery Architectural and Fine Arts Library, Columbia University. In addition to permission from Columbia University, permission of the copyright owner (if not Columbia University) and/or any holder of other rights (such as publicity and/or privacy rights) may also be required for reproduction, publication, distributions, and other uses. Responsibility for making an independent legal assessment of any item and securing any necessary permissions rests with the persons desiring to publish the item. Columbia University makes no warranties as to the accuracy of the materials or their fitness for a particular purpose.

Preferred Citation

Felix Augenfeld architectural records and papers. Dept. of Drawings & Archives, Avery Architectural and Fine Arts Library. Columbia University, New York, N.Y.

Related Material

Trudy Jeremias Collection, 1857-2008, (bulk 1930-1980) at the Leo Baeck Institute, Center for Jewish History.

Gardiner, Muriel. Code name "Mary" : memoirs of an American woman in the Austrian underground. New Haven : Yale University Press, 1983.

Walter Sobotka architectural records and papers, 1897-1971 (bulk 1922-1954) at Avery Architectural and Fine Arts Library, Columbia University.

Jan Hird Pokorny architectural drawings, 1926-1998, (bulk 1947-1998) at Avery Architectural and Fine Arts Library, Columbia University.

For Further Information

For more information about using the collections and conducting research in the Department of Drawings & Archives, please see our FAQ.

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About the Finding Aid / Processing Information

Columbia University Libraries. Avery Architecture and Fine Arts Library. Department of Drawings and Archives; machine readable finding aid created by Columbia University Libraries Digital Library Program Division

Processing Information

The collection was processed by Barrett Reiter (Graduate Intern) under the supervision of Shelley Hayreh, Avery Archivist, in 2015

Machine readable finding aid generated from MARC-AMC source via XSLT conversion June 25, 2009 Finding aid written in English.
    2009-06-25 File created.

CLIO ID: 3464747 View CLIO record

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Index Terms

The names and terms listed below are represented in this collection. Links below allow searches at Columbia University through the Archival Collections Portal and through CLIO, the catalog for Columbia University Libraries, as well as ArchiveGRID, a consortial/union catalog offered by OCLC that allows users to search the holdings of multiple archives and libraries.

All links open new windows.

Subjects (Personal Names)

HeadingCUL Archives:
Portal
CUL Collections:
CLIO
Nat'l / Int'l Archives:
ArchiveGRID
Behrens, Peter, 1868-1940.PortalCLIOArchiveGRID
Breuer, Otto, 1915-.PortalCLIOArchiveGRID
Damaz, Ala.PortalCLIOArchiveGRID
de Carmel, Anna.PortalCLIOArchiveGRID
Frank, Josef, 1885-1967.PortalCLIOArchiveGRID
Freud, Ernst L., 1892-1970.PortalCLIOArchiveGRID
Freud, Sigmund, 1856-1939.PortalCLIOArchiveGRID
Gardiner, Muriel, 1901-1985.PortalCLIOArchiveGRID
Groag, Jacqueline, 1903-1986.PortalCLIOArchiveGRID
Groag, Jacques, 1892-1962.PortalCLIOArchiveGRID
Gruen, Victor, 1903-PortalCLIOArchiveGRID
Hoffmann, Josef Franz Maria, 1870-1956.PortalCLIOArchiveGRID
Hofmann, Karl, 1896-1933.PortalCLIOArchiveGRID
Holzmeister, Clemens, 1886-1983.PortalCLIOArchiveGRID
Loos, Adolf, 1870-1933.PortalCLIOArchiveGRID
Neutra, Richard Joseph, 1892-1970.PortalCLIOArchiveGRID
Pokorny, Jan Hird, 1914-2008.PortalCLIOArchiveGRID
Sobotka, Walter.PortalCLIOArchiveGRID
Strnad, Oskar, 1879-1935.PortalCLIOArchiveGRID
Wagner, Otto, 1841-1918.PortalCLIOArchiveGRID

Subjets (Corporate Names)

HeadingCUL Archives:
Portal
CUL Collections:
CLIO
Nat'l / Int'l Archives:
ArchiveGRID
Theiss & Jaksch.PortalCLIOArchiveGRID
Buttinger residence (New York, N.Y.)PortalCLIOArchiveGRID

Topics

HeadingCUL Archives:
Portal
CUL Collections:
CLIO
Nat'l / Int'l Archives:
ArchiveGRID
Architecture--United States--Designs and plans.PortalCLIOArchiveGRID
Architectural drawings--AmericanPortalCLIOArchiveGRID

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History / Biographical Note

History

Felix Augenfeld, (1893-1984) was an Austrian architect and interior designer who worked on primarily residential projects in Vienna, London, and New York. He studied at the Technische Hoehschule (School of Architecture) in Vienna, receiving his degree after his service in the Austrian Army during World War I. Until 1938, when he left Austria for London and then for the United States in 1939, Augenfeld was active in Vienna with his business partner Karl Hofmann, as Hofmann & Augenfeld, and also worked with Professor Oskar Strnad as a stage designer in both Vienna and London. One of Augenfeld’s most well-known pieces is Sigmund Freud’s office chair, which was commissioned by Sigmund Freud’s daughter Mathilde.

When he arrived in New York City, Augenfeld associated with many similarly relocated Viennese designers and architects (such as Walter Sobotka) and maintained contacts with some of his Viennese clients who had also relocated to New York. Among these clients was Muriel Morris Gardiner Buttinger, who – while originally from Chicago – had been living in Vienna prior to World War II and played an instrumental role in assisting Augenfeld in getting both to London and to New York to escape the Nazi regime. This friendship lasted for the rest of their lives and Augenfeld designed the Buttinger’s New York City residence and research library at 10 East 87th Street. This building is now a locally designated landmark.

Augenfeld became an American citizen in 1945. Later in life, around 1960, Augenfeld married Anna de Carmel (née Friedlander), an Austrian designer active in ceramics and modern lamp design. This relationship would last until his death in 1984.

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