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Adolf Loos

Adolf Loos

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Austrian architect. Educated in Dresden, Ger., he practiced in Vienna, though he spent extended periods in the U.S. and Paris. Opposed to both Art Nouveau and Beaux-Arts historicism, he announced as early as 1898 his intention to avoid the use of unnecessary ornament. His Steiner House in Vienna (1910) has been referred to by some architectural historians as the first completely modern dwelling; the main (rear) facade is a symmetrical, skillfully balanced composition of rectangles. His essays from this period, denouncing ornament and decoration, were equally influential. His best-known large structure is the Goldman and Salatsch Building in Vienna (1910), in which small amounts of Classical detail are offset by large areas of blank, polished marble. His work strongly influenced European Modernist architects after World War I.