Known for his good looks, winning personality and how he charmed women, Fritz August Breuhaus was considered to be one of Germany’s most sought after and most important architects. However, he is also known for his contributions to interior design. His interior design projects ranged from the interiors of his own flats and libraries in various parts of Europe to designing the interiors of training vessels, battleships, steamships and airplanes.
Also known as Fritz August or F.A.B, he was born on the 9th of February, 1883 to Heinrich Hugo Breuhaus and Johanne Kipling in Solingen, Germany – a steel industry centre. Friedrich pursued his studies in a well-known private boy’s high school in Oberkassel.
From 1929, Fritz August added “de Groot” to his name; to make it known that he was a descendant of Breuhaus de Groot, a famous dynasty of Dutch painters. However, in reality Fritz August was not the great-grandson or grandson of Frans Arnold Breuhaus de Groot.
Completing his schooling and graduation in the French town of Bonn, he returned to Solingen in 1900 to start apprenticeship at a steel founding firm. In 1902-03, Breuhaus studied at Hessische Technische Hochschule Darmstadt. In 1903, he studied construction science at Technische Hochschule Stuttgart and attended classes on design, watercolour painting and decorative design. In 1904, he studied at an arts and crafts school “Kunstgewerbeschule Dsseldorf”.
From 1913 to 1914, his interior design projects included a library room, a hunting room, a dining room, and also for a cabaret hall on the “Delphin”, a pleasure boat. He served in the First World War and became a sergeant. Following Breuhaus’ arrival from Russia, his life was a picture of disaster – he lost a son to pneumonia and divorced his first wife.
Breuhaus turned to fabric printing, and the designing of furniture, utilitarian and decorative objects, and wallpaper in the 1920s. He became a star in interior decoration when he furnished the first class of the luxury liner named ‘Bremen’. The period from 1920 to 1930 is marked by Breuhaus marrying again and by his winning various interior design competitions. During this period, he did interior design for steamships such as ‘Westindiendampfer’ and ‘Azorendampfer Orotava’, and also for a barbecue restaurant.
In the period from 1932 up to his death in 1960, Breuhaus’ activities included interior design for ships such as the SS Cordilliera and Gorch Fock and for the passenger section of airplanes such as the Heinkel HE 70. He also designed the interiors of an entrance hall for an organization of Berlin artists. Fritz August Breuhaus, the interior designer and architect passed away on the 2nd of December, 1960.