The attempt of a Jewish Ring. The Tel Aviv architectural circle Chug in the 1930s

In 1932 the Chug Architectural Association was established in Tel Aviv, in the tradition of the avant-garde Berlin Circle of 1926. Over the next eight years this group became the motor driving the transformation of Tel Aviv from an eclectic suburb of the Arab and Turkish port city of Jaffa into an independent and modern metropolitan centre. This development is expressed by the buildings of the Chug architects, who built in the avant-garde architectural style of Europe and North America. Today the White City of Tel Aviv is listed as a World Heritage site under the protection of UNESCO. All the more surprising therefore that the Chug group, as the heart of this modern city, has not been significantly considered in the architectural history research.

The research project is to identify and analyse – from a European perspective and with concrete sources (magazines, exhibition brochures, travel reports, letters, construction documents) – the form and consequences of the observation, appropriation and transformation of European and American network structures in the field of architecture. The focus here will be on the field of architectural education, the acquisition of work contracts, financing, construction technology and building materials. In this way the Chug architects’ association should be viewed from an interconnected historical perspective, thereby contributing to the transnational reassessment of architectural history and production of the 20th century.

Researcher: Kolja Missal