German prefabricated houses in Israel, 2009

Friedrich von Borries, Jens-Uwe Fischer
Suhrkamp, Frankfurt, 2009
200 pages, paperback, 17,6 x 11 cm
ISBN: 978-3-518-12593-9 / German

Berlin, in the late 1920s. The Hirsch Kupfer und Messingwerke designed a prefabricated house – made of the weather-resistant copper from their own factory. Walter Gropius was commissioned to refine the designs, the houses were called things like 'Copper Castle' and 'Spring Dream'.

But then came the global economic crisis, Hitler assumed power, and suddenly the prefabricated dwellings were known as 'Jerusalem' and 'Lebanon'. The company placed an ad in the Jüdische Rundschau that read: »Take a copper house with you to Palestine. Despite the intense heat your rooms will remain cool.« Friedrich von Borries and Jens-Uwe Fischer tracked down the builder and residents of the copper houses in Germany and Israel and talked with them about what home means to them.