Friedrich Stowasser, known as Friedensreich Hundertwasser, was one of the most important contemporary Austrian artists. A visionary non-conformist performer, who was born in 1928 in Vienna. In fact, he created unique art in order to spread his message based on the harmony between the individual and nature.
Hundertwasser discovered his artistic abilities early in life, and during a trip in Italy in 1949, developed his own unique style. Therefore, he dedicated his entire life to architecture, art and graphics. For instance, he did not have a studio and was producing his art wherever he was, at home, on the road, in public places or at friend’s houses.
His paintings were full of different colours, assembled on his impulse and without a specific symbolism. For example, his pieces were made on different types of paper, using gold and silver and new oil, tempera and watercolours techniques. In fact, he liked to put various paints in one piece in order to create a strong texture and contrast. Above all, the Spiral symbol, used in many pieces, was the representation of the creation and the progress of life.
The artist was against traditional architecture based on straight line and functionality. As a result, for him this type of architecture was responsible for people’s misery. For instance, he promoted diversity and creative freedom and created new architectonic methods based on organic forms in harmony with nature.
The Hundertwasser House in Vienna is a residential building constructed between 1983 and 1985. It can be seen only from outside and is one of the most important attractions of the city. For instance, the house was made by Hundertwasser and with the collaboration of the Austrian architect Josef Krawina. Above all, the colourfully exterior façade, the trees on the balconies and roof terraces make this house a piece of art and a magic green oasis in Vienna.
Another important building designed by the Viennese artist is the Kunst Haus Wien. This exhibition space has, on the ground floor, the museum shop and a café-restaurant. Moreover, on the upper floors visitors can see his paintings, graphics, tapestries and architectural models. In other words, the architecture of this building is the representation of Hundertwasser ideas. The facade is not perfectly straight and flat and has irregular mosaics and black-and-white patterns that break-up the grid system.
In conclusion, Hundertwasser philosophy was based on the concept of Beauty is a Panacea: Schönheit ist ein Allheilmittel. That is why he wanted to restore beauty and romanticism in everyday life, eliminating aesthetic emptiness.