15 July 2011

Daydreaming of a Rathaus and Municipal Buildings to Come. . .

Touch-ups to the North German church, shown in my previous post, are complete, and things look much more convincing.  I need only finish and paint the stairway and attached it to the main entrance, and then that's all finished.  Stay tuned here for a few photos in another day or so.  

In the mean time, my mind has wandered, and I've decided that I need a town hall, or Rathaus in German, along with a municipal building or two before I cease construction and turn my attention back to painting soldiers.  As many of you know already, however, when the lightening bolt of inspiration to do something strikes, you should go with it. . .  even if it's not the primary focus of a particular project.  That, or I could simply be avoiding the resumption of work on those 30 Minden hussars.  Anything is possible here in the Grand Duchy of Stollen after all!

So, what actual structures do I plan to base my envisioned tabletop built-up-areas on?  Well, a jaunt around the internet the last couple of evenings has yielded the following photographs from various old Hanseatic towns in Northern German, Poland, and the Baltics, including. . . 

 First off, here is a model of the Rathaus in Stralsund, Germany along the Baltic coast in the eastern part of the country.

I like this structure very much, but the facade seems daunting given the precision work necessary with a fresh X-acto hobby knife blade!  Maybe I should have been a surgeon?
Here is the Rathaus in Wolgast, Germany, a small town near the Baltic coast and very close to the Polish border where the Grand Duchess and I spent a few days during the summer of 2009, visiting the V1 and V2 testing grounds on Usedom.  I like the structure above, which would be relatively easy to reproduce in miniature, but it's more of the same since I have a number of town houses already that feature similar gables.

 Next, we have the less ornate end of the old Rathaus in Szczecin, Poland (formerly Stettin, Germany) and not far from Wolgast and Usedom actually.  Again, I like the relatively simple nature of this building, but it too duplicates much of what I have already. 

The much more ornate Rathaus (at left) in Bremen, Germany might be a distinct possibility.  It was built during the early 1400s with the lovely facades added about 100 years later.  A little careful selective compression, to reduce the number of  archways and windows, might be in order though.  That would help make it fit the usual 1 & 3/4" x 3" base size I've adopted for most of my scratch-built structures.  By the way, if ever you find yourself in Bremen, there is a pretty good North German restaurant -- The Bremer Ratskeller -- in the cellar where the Grand Duchess and I splurged and enjoyed an evening meal a couple of years ago. 

This building is the old Rathuas in Tallin, Estonia, which had the German name of Reval for several centuries.  I like the tower very much, but the rest is kind of plain.  With the exception of the tower, it seems relatively easy to produce, assemble, and paint using my usual procedure.

Finally, the Rathaus in Luebeck, Germany, my old stomping grounds from back in the days when I not only had long hair, but BIG hair.  Shhh. . .  Don't tell!  It's a little embarrassing now.  But anyway, the structure pictured above is visually interesting, and more than half of it looks fairly straightforward to reproduce in miniature.  But the ten skinny turrets on the right half might prove difficult to fashion unless I can find balsa or basswood dowels that will cut and sand easily.  Hmmm. . .   Decisions, decisions!


johnpreece said...

Only thinking aloud here, but I wonder if there would be any way of incorporating a facade from a Kibri or Fala railway kit into the balsa body of the buiding and then paint it in your usual style?

I was looking at some of the Pegasus Gothic ruins yesterday with the saame sort of idea in mind. They are a bit pricey, but the railway kits often go for a song second hand if they are damaged. You wouldnt want all the fiddly bits anyway.

May not work but its a thought.


Fitz-Badger said...

I like the fancier ones with arcade arches and/or turrets and it would be distinct from your less fanciful townhomes. If you cut out the basic shapes and added nits of trim and/or drawn on details (and compressed things so you have fewer repeated details) it could still look quite good without being too tricky to do (I think).
In any case, I'll look forward to seeing what you come up with.

Der Alte Fritz said...

My sense is that the more ornate Rathauses were built in the 19th century and thus would not be appropriate for Stollen in the 1760s. Maybe if you copied the back wing of the first building, that architectural style would be more in keeping with the buildings that you already have.


La Sombra Sofisticada said...

Thank you very much for this post, I truly enjoyed it! Northern Germany has a special place in my heart.


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