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  1. ArchDaily
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  4. Germany
  5. Maurer United Architects
  6. 2009
  7. Indemann / Maurer United Architects

Indemann / Maurer United Architects

  • 01:00 - 21 March, 2010
Indemann / Maurer United Architects
Indemann / Maurer United Architects

Indemann / Maurer United Architects Indemann / Maurer United Architects Indemann / Maurer United Architects Indemann / Maurer United Architects +55

  • Architects

  • Location

    Inden, Germany
  • Architects

    Maurer United Architects
  • Project Leaders

    Marc Maurer, Nicole Maurer
  • Collaborators

    Gaby Vanhommerig, Joost Eggermont, Christoph Meyers, Roy Konings, Alan Frijns, Annika Frencken, Peggy Maurer, Danielle Konings
  • W Installations Advisor

    Ingenieurbüro Inco GmbH
  • Construction Advisor

    Arup GmbH, Düsseldorf
  • E Installations Advisor

    T + N Ingenieure GbR
  • Contractor

    Metalbau Teufert GmbH
  • Budget

    € 2,500,000
  • Design Year

  • Area

    860.0 sqm
  • Project Year


From the architect. In the municipality of Inden, in Germany, there is a brown coal open cast mine and in order to excavate the mineral resources several entire villages were relocated within the municipality. The mine currently covers an area of 4,500 hectares and excavation has created an unusual landscape. This scene will change after 2030 when the excavation work stops since the site will be transformed into a large area for water sports and other recreation called ‘Der Indische See’. The municipality Inden wanted to erect a watchtower and landmark at this location. MUA decided on using the shape of an immense, 36 m tall robot: the Indemann. The Indemann’s design is characterised by its striking external appearance, but the real surprise lies in the staged experiences that the visitors can expect in its interior. 

The public experience the building as a composition of architectonic experiments, with tremendous overhanging elements, surprising transparencies and, for example, accessible grid floors in the outstretched robot arm 18 metres above the ground. In addition to this the front has had 40,000 LED’s incorporated into it. This is the first LED façade to be realised on this scale in Europe and it works like a folded screen and can have animations projected onto it. In this way the watchtower creates a true lighthouse effect when it’s dark. Since its completion the building has come to be seen as a ‘Wahrzeichen der Region’: a landmark for the Euregio Maas-Rhine. The watchtower alongside the A4 motorway between Aachen and Cologne unites ‘Dutch Design’ with ‘German Efficiency’. With this design MUA not only refers to the giant excavators but also marks the transition from an industrial to a media-based era. The opening attracted 10.000 visitors.

“We started the Indemann project by writing a fairy tale that established the region’s profile. In the fairy tale the people finally built a monument for a giant, the Indemann, who they have helped physically, but mainly strategically, in the story. The fact that this watchtower has now been completed shows that fairy tales can become reality.”

Location to be used only as a reference. It could indicate city/country but not exact address. Cite: "Indemann / Maurer United Architects" 21 Mar 2010. ArchDaily. Accessed . <>
Read comments


bani · April 01, 2014

this is a great project watch tower project but i am interested about the materials that are used for this building if you can help me with...

wind august · June 12, 2013


robotinfo · January 27, 2012

Indemann / Maurer United Architects | ArchDaily:

openinnovation · January 27, 2012

Indemann / Maurer United Architects | ArchDaily:

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Anna W. · April 07, 2011

Indemann / Maurer United Architects | ArchDaily via @archdaily

Alessandro Reginato · December 16, 2010

Indemann / Maurer United Architects | ArchDaily via @archdaily

Joseph King · November 12, 2010

Edit: My favorite from SEGD Dynamic Environments 4 - Indemann, Maurer United Architects

mayu! · September 28, 2010

Robot Structure in Germany by one of my fave architects ~ Indemann / Maurer United Architects | ArchDaily via @archdaily

Deasy Pesoth · September 28, 2010

Indemann / Maurer United Architects

Cristina Goberna · September 27, 2010

Indemann / Maurer United Architects | ArchDaily via @archdaily

yasukazu OGAWA · September 27, 2010
truth · September 27, 2010

I get suspicious by all the pictures taken from one side, so it's really so awful from another sides. I suppose it is.

yumi lee · September 26, 2010

RT @goobonci: ??????, ?? ????? ??? ????? ?? ??, ????? ? ? ??? ???? ??? ?????? ???. ...

Junghyun Park · September 25, 2010

RT @goobonci: ??????, ?? ????? ??? ????? ?? ??, ????? ? ? ??? ???? ??? ?????? ???.

??? · September 25, 2010

??????, ?? ????? ??? ????? ?? ??, ????? ? ? ??? ???? ??? ?????? ???.

TEDxEutropolis · September 01, 2010

Indemann, the robot watchtower by @maurerunited in the village of Inden, has 40.000 led&#39s incorporated in its facade

JW · July 15, 2010

Last year I was assigned by the municipality of Inden/Germany to build a 3D-model of the "Indemann" for an interactive presentation shown on an international real estate fair.

Have a look at:

Architecture News · March 25, 2010

RT @originisdesign: It really made me think of the movie Transformers or a big Lego building
#architecture # ...

Viqui · March 23, 2010

Love it!! I would have added square LED eyes!

RK · March 23, 2010

I think the design is great. I know the in the description, I didn't hear any talk of this being a sustainable project (I am suspecting the project to be a bit on the wasteful extremes side of things), but without addressing those issues this is still a very powerful design, and I do believe that things like this can vitalize communities. If I ever travel to Germany anytime soon I will definitely try to stop by to see this.

(BTW, I don't at all think the robot is giving a Nazi salute, that seems a bit crazy.)

sdf · March 23, 2010

whoa, the modern wickerman!

Peter K. · March 22, 2010

I live in that region and it has absolutely NO EFFECT on the tourism of the Indenland.
Am I the only person who unrealized that this robot is making a Nazi salute. Not a really good promotion for a german region.

eili · September 01, 2010 03:06 PM

NAZI SALUTE ?! come on .. thats a bit too much of interpretation.. was just 2 say something, right ?!

Walter Zabel · March 23, 2010 12:30 AM

I live nearby and understand that not only with the opening 10.000 visitors went there, but ever since 10.000 visitors visit the watchtower EVERY MONTH! - A nice number for ..

Felipe Goes · March 22, 2010

beatiful structure.

Mookie · March 22, 2010

I Am Ironman!

Heavy boots of lead fills his victims full of dread.
running as fast as they can Ironman lives again.

Lee · March 22, 2010

is that a gag or is it serious? anyhow ... i find it very clever. clever in a way to create a unique landmark that everybody will be eager to visit in the next 20 years who comes to this region - just imagine what effect it will have on this area and the actual spot. and clever enough to spice a bit up our thinking about architecture. i do believe sometimes we need projects like this!

Krzysztof_Pydo · March 22, 2010

-Powiedz mi. Po co jest ten mi??
-W?a?nie! Po co!?
-Otó? to! NIKT nie wie po co, wi?c nie musisz si? obawiac, ?e ktos zapyta. Wiesz co robi ten mi?? On odpowiada ?ywotnym potrzebom ca?ego spo?ecze?stwa. To jest mi? na skal? naszych mo?liwo?ci. Ty wiesz co my robimy tym misiem? My otwieramy oczy niedowiarkom. PATRZCIE mówimy to NASZE, przez NAS wykonane i to nie jest nasze ostatnie s?owo! I nikt nie ma prawa sie przyczepic. :)

PS · March 22, 2010

I would love to see what it looks like from a distance.

urbane.abuse · March 22, 2010

Awesome! Giant robots always are.

lisa · March 22, 2010

the giant robot wants to shake hands, cute.

lc · March 22, 2010

just so so

blackstone · March 22, 2010 06:38 PM

oh please... what's not to love?


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Indemann / Maurer United Architects