Adolf Loos held that a building should have a soberly discreet exterior and reserve all its riches for its interior. This being so, any real appreciation of the spatial complexity of his work requires engagement with his work as an interior designer.


Texts by Beatriz Colomina, Markus Kristan, Christian Kühn, Christopher Long, Juan José Lahuerta, Eva B. Ottillinger, Pilar Parcerisas.


English / ISBN: 978-84-9900-190-6

Spanish / ISBN: 978-84-9900-189-0

16.5 x 23 cm

100 halftone images, 100 colour plates

284 pp.

Tenov, Museu del Disseny de Barcelona, Fundació ”la Caixa”



Adolf Loos held that a building should have a soberly discreet exterior and reserve all its riches for its interior. This being so, any real appreciation of the spatial complexity of the work of one of the most misunderstood architects of the 20th century requires engagement with his interiors.

In marked contrast to his contemporaries in the Vienna Secession, who designed their spaces down to the smallest detail, Loos presented himself as a ‘professor of interior design’ perfectly willing to adapt to the habits and tastes of his clients, inviting them to embrace their own tastelessness rather than defer to the discernment of an ‘aesthete’ architect. Together with the future occupant, he designed welcoming interiors whose warmth came from the effective use of quality materials and the creation of a flowing continuity articulated by the furnishings. Loos designed furniture integral to the architecture, bestowing function on each part of the space, such as benches and shelves of the same wood as the paneling of a wall, or snug living rooms defined by a lowered ceiling and the fusion of furniture and walls. At the same time, this conception of the dwelling, its architecture and furniture as a unitary whole did not prevent him from complementing these interiors with industrially produced pieces based on classic English models, which he had no qualms about using or copying, thanks to the pragmatism he acquired during his stay in the USA.

For Loos, the importance of the interior was bound up with the life that was lived in it and a respect for privacy and intimacy. His journalistic writings, published mainly in the magazine Das Andere, bear witness to Loos's will to modernize Austrian society. Over and above his formal architecture, what Loos created was a new culture of living, and it is precisely this attitude that makes him so thoroughly modern.



Professor of History and Theory of Architecture, Director of the Media and Modernity programme. Princeton University, New Jersey. PhD from the Escola Tècnica Superior d’Arquitectura de Barcelona (UPC). 

Studied Art History, History and Archeology at the University of Vienna. Since 1993 he is the curator of the architect's collection at Albertina museum in Vienna. He has written numerous essays and books on Austrian architecture and art from the 19th and 20th centuries (Josef Hoffmann, Wilhelm Holzbauer, Adolf Loos, Gustav Peichl, Karl Schwanzer, Joseph Urban, etc).

He studied Architecture at TU Vienna (Dipl.Ing) and at ETH Zurich ( He is a professor at the department for Building Theory and Design at TU Vienna. He has been board member of the Austrian Society for Architecture since 1995 and is chairman of the Austrian Architectural Foundation since 2000. He has published about a wide range of topics including architectural theory and CAAD, among them: Das Schöne, das Wahre und das Richtige Adolf Loos und das Haus Müller in Prag, Vieweg 1989; Stilverzicht Typologie und CAAD als Werkzeuge einer autonomen Architektur, Vieweg 1998; Anton Schweighofer Der stille Radikale, Springer 2000 (forthcoming). His essays have appeared in Architektur- und Bauforum, Arch+, Archithese, Daidalus and Architecture d’aujourd’hui and on a regular basis in the Viennese newspaper Die Presse.

Professor Long studied at the universities of Graz, Munich, and Vienna, and he received his Ph.D. at the University of Texas at Austin in 1993. From 1994 to 1995, he taught at the Central European University in Prague. His interests center on modern architectural history, with a particular emphasis on Central Europe between 1880 and the present. Trained in history rather than in architecture, his approach borrows from cultural and intellectual history, as well as political and economic history. He has studied questions of cultural representation in architecture, the larger ideological context of late nineteenth- and early twentieth-century architectural theory, and the development of architectural education. Professor Long's interests also include modern design in Austria, the Czech lands, and the United States. He has worked on several exhibitions and publishes widely on a diverse range of subjects. The New Space: Movement and Experience in Viennese Modern Architecture. New Haven and London: Yale University Press, 2016. 

Doctor in Architecture. Professor of Art and Architecture History, Escola Tècnica Superior d’Arquitectura de Barcelona (ETSAB-UPC) curator at the Museu Nacional d’Art de Catalunya, director of the Gaudí Chair at ETSAB-UPC. 

Curator, disciple of Harald Szeemann, has made numerous exhibitions as Dalí. elective affinities (2004) and Joseph Beuys. Diary of Seychelles. She is a member of the International Association of Art Critics (AICA) and a member of the MACBA council.



Printing Errata on the 1st edition of this book:

The photographs of the Julius Hummel Collection are all the ones listed below.

The credit in the printed copy of this book should read as follows:

Hummel Collection, Vienna, photo © Gisela Erlacher & Julius Hummel: p. 38 left, 42 right, 44, 48, 50 top right, 72, 98 bottom, 99 top, 101, 103, 109, 115, 118, 120, 124, 127, 128 bottom, 134 bottom, 135, 138, 155, 156, 158, 160, 161 bottom, 162, 165, 166, 168, 172 top, 175, 176 bottom, 178, 180, 182 top, 183, 184, 186, 190, 207 top, 210 bottom, 212 top, 216, 224, 226 top, 227, 242, 244, 247, 252, 255, 257, 258 left, 259, 226 bottom, 227.

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