Hermann Friedrich Mertens - Netherlands

The two free-standing, tower-like office buildings are among the best-known designs of the Dutch architect Frans van Gool and are located in the immediate vicinity of the Rijksmuseum. In their size, volumetry and contour, the buildings refer to the villas that had previously been on the site. The two buildings are located on the border between the canal zone and the 19th century districts. The two elegant office buildings with up to seven storeys have exposed brick facades. The façades are punctuated by a regular pattern of square windows without subdivision. The total of 312 windows with tinted panes are installed flush with the façade. In this way, the physical appearance of the buildings is emphasised. The controversial buildings became known in 1980 during the debate on the aesthetics of functionalist architecture. Local columnists were very negative about the buildings - only over the years had the criticism gradually subsided.
The architect Hermann Friedrich Mertens (15.08.1885 - 27.01.1960) originally came from the Dutch East Indies. After attending secondary school in the Netherlands, he was trained as an engineer at the then Technical University of Delft. From 1922, he worked as an independent architect in Bilthoven. He was able to design various buildings for the National Banking Company and several water towers. After the Second World War, Hermann Friedrich Mertens was entrusted with the reconstruction of the bombed-out city centre of Rotterdam.

Der Architekt Hermann Friedrich Mertens (15.08.1885 - 27.01.1960) stammt ursprünglich aus Niederländisch-Ostindien. Nachdem er die Sekundarschule in den Niederlanden besucht hatte, wurde er an der damaligen Technischen Universität Delft zum Ingenieur ausgebildet. Ab dem Jahr 1922 arbeitete er als selbständiger Architekt in Bilthoven. Er konnte verschiedene Gebäude für die Nationale Bankgesellschaft und mehrere Wassertürme entwerfen. Nach dem zweiten Weltkrieg wurde Hermann Friedrich Mertens als Bauleiter mit dem Wiederaufbau der zerbombten Innenstadt vom Rotterdam betraut.

1941 - 1949  Rotterdamsche Bank, Rotterdam