Music School, Hamm, by wulf architekten, photo courtesy of Christian Richters, Münster

Wulf Architekten make beautiful music

Architects add another storey to continue the story of a 1970s cube-shaped music school in Hamm, Germany

Our friends at wulf architekten in Stuttgart got in touch this week to show us some photographs of their music school in Hamm, north west Germany, that's just opened. The company won the competition to build the school in September 2009. The practice is noteworthy in that it tends to focus on creating good architecture for a good cause, specialising in public building projects such as cultural facilities, schools and university construction, health care and sports projects and occasionally social housing. In the recent past it's worked on a new exhibition centre in Stuttgart, transformative buildings for an old people’s welfare centre in Stuttgart-Killesberg, a secondary school in Hamm, a training centre for apprentice butchers in Augsburg, a medical professional rehabilitation for young people in Vallendar and a Montessori holiday home and daycare centre in Furstenfeldbruck.

Music School, Hamm Music School, Hamm, by wulf architekten, photo courtesy of Christian Richters


The company says the motivating factors in its work may be “dreams, illusions and a utopian vision, but that these are well balanced with a need for realisation." Freedom, clarity and an understanding of human needs are the ideals the practice strives for in its architecture and working ethos. The music school project included an extension to the existing 1970s built school, its renovation and a complete re‐organisation of the ground floor. The extension was created by lengthening the originally square building and by the remarkable addition of another storey, rising above the square in front of the entrance. The curved roof transfers forces to the end walls meaning that the existing structure did not have to be reinforced. "Each concept for every new project developed in our office is special," Tobias Wulf tells Phaidon. "We want to develop complex concepts of great cultural importance and we are interested in forming the avant‐garde. The characteristic for the new music school is the vertical extension which creates a new, extraordinary image."

State Finance Department, Landshut The state finance department, Landshut, also by wulf architekten, photo courtesy of Archigraphie, Steffen Vogt, Stuttgart