(b. 1656, Au im Bregenzerwald, d. 1723, Einsiedeln)

Exterior view

Benedictine Abbey, Einsiedeln

Baroque church building in Switzerland is marked by the inventiveness of the Vorarlberg school. It can be observed in monastic buildings and ecclesiastical foundations in particular for which the architects of the Vorarlberg provided numerous designs.

Einsiedeln Abbey is a Benedictine monastery in Switzerland. The abbey is dedicated to Our Lady of the Hermits. The church has been a major resting point on the Way of St. James for centuries. In 1674 the Vorarlberg architect Johann Georg Kuen (1642-1691) built the choir. There was a pair of Romanesque towers at the west end, and initially the plan was to integrate these into the church façade of the new foundation. In 1691 Kuen's pupil Caspar Moosbrugger started planning. He designed a ground plan in which the nave was accommodated to the pier-church system of his teacher. Planning went on until 1693, but it was only ten years later that the decision was finally taken to rebuild the church. The plans were finalized only in 1717-19. The dedication of the church took place only in 1735.

The façade of the church anticipates the broad entrance area and the chapel of grace. Single and double pilasters mirror the inner arrangement f the piers. The spatial effects are concentrated on the preaching area behind the chapel of race where the vaulting gains height and finally peaks in the domed area where the galleries end.

The picture shows the west front of the church.