J. Hoffman introduced the international experience of Art Nouveau in Austria and proposed the renovation of Austrian architectural culture. A few years later, influenced by the Glasgow School of Ch. R. Mackintosh, from the Arts and Crafts movement of Morris, and moved by a personal interest in furniture, he founded in 1903, with K. Moser and F. Waerndorfe, the Wiener Werkstätte, Viennese artisan production community. From 1898 he collaborated with the magazine of the Secession Ver Sacrum and from 1899 he was a professor at the Kunstegewerberschule in Vienna (School of Applied Arts), a position he held until his retirement in 1936.
J. Hoffmann bases his artistic career on the theories of modern architecture and on the functionalism of Hasenauer and Wagner. Even if he was considered an architect first of all, his contribution in the field of design was very relevant.