Cycling in Germany #14 – Shades of Gaudi on the Elbe: Hundertwasser

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“I mustn’t forget to show you something before we leave Wittenberg tomorrow”, says Jean Michel, “a modern building, the Martin Luther Gymnasium” (which means high school).

Entrance to the Martin Luther Gymnasium

Entrance to the Martin Luther Gymnasium

Wow, I am bowled over when I see it, tucked away behind the vegatation in a side street. It’s Sunday so there is no one about. What an inspiring place to go to school.

Close-up of the Martin Luther Gymnasium from inside the gate

Close-up of the Martin Luther Gymnasium from inside the gate

According to the official website, the architect, Hundertwasser, a visionary and reponsible creator, mobilizes the power of his art in order to spread his message for a life in harmony with nature and individual creativity.

The façade taken from the right corner

The façade taken from the right corner

He is a symbolic figure for a non-conformist way of life, a forerunner of environmental protection and an ambassador for a self-determined alternative existence.

The gymnasium showing the second buildling behind

The gymnasium showing the second buildling behind. We didn’t like to venture  too far into the school.

Friedensreich Hundertwasser Regentag Dunkelbunt LiebeFrau was born in Vienna on 15th December 1928 and died on board the Queen Elizabeth 2 on 19th February 2000 on his way back to his home in New Zealand.

Close-up of the right side of the gymnasium

Close-up of the right side of the gymnasium

He was an artist, thinker and architect or, as he claimed in his manifesto of 24th January 1990, a doctor of architecture with a passion for water and colours. His deeply environmentalist message was expressed early on in everything he created: paintings, posters, postage stamps, houses, buildings, books.

The street façade of the Green Citadel.

The street façade of the Green Citadel.

Our next stop is Magdeburg, It’s already 31°C. We park just in front of the Green Citadel, in the middle of the city, another work by Hundertwasser, and said to be his architectural masterpiece.

The right façade, showing a second modern building  and the Neogothic law courts and post office buildlng

The right façade, showing a second modern building and the Neogothic law courts and post office buildlng

For me, it’s love at first sight: golden globes on top of towers, “tree tenants” looking out of “dancing windows”, meadows of wildflowers on the roofs, “foot melodies” taking strollers through the inner courtyard.

Die Gemälde Stube in the courtyard of the Green Citadel

Die Gemälde Stube in the courtyard of the Green Citadel

We go round the other side and discover there is a restaurant inside, along with a hotel, shops and private apartments. The courtyard is cool and shady.

Fountain and shops in the main courtyard

Fountain and shops in the main courtyard

For a total of twenty euros, we have a glass of Riesling and the dish of the day brought by a friendly waitress speaking excellent English. We take our time to soak in the atmosphere of the courtyard with its little fountain.

Pay-for public toilets, free if you eat at the restaurant

Pay-for public toilets, free if you eat at the restaurant

Even the pay-for public toilets are part of the decor. The waitress gives me a token.

A rear view of the Green Citadel

A rear view of the Green Citadel

Reminiscent of the colourful works of the Gaudi in Barcelona, Hunterwasser’s buildings are quite unique. My photos do not do them justice.

OTHER POSTS ABOUT CYCLING IN GERMANY

Cycling in Germany – Tips & Tricks
Cycling in Germany #1 – Kobern-Gondorf on the Moselle
Cycling in Germany #2 – Rhine from Saint Goar to Lorch
Cycling in Germany #3 – Cochem to Zell on the Moselle
Cycling in Germany #4 – Koblenz where the Moselle meets the Rhine
Cycling in Germany #5 – Bad Schaugen to Pirna along the Elbe
Cycling in Germany #6 – Bastei Rocks, Honigen and over the border to Czech Republic 
Cycling in Germany #7 – Dresden: accommodation & car trouble and Baroque Treasure  
Cycling in Germany #8 – Dresden Neustadt: Kunsthof Passage, Pfund’s Molkerei, a broom shop & trompe l’oeil
Cycling in Germany #9 – Country roads around Niderlommatzsch on the Elbe
Cycling in Germany #10 – Meissen on the Elbe
Cycling in Germany #11 – Martin Luther Country: Torgau on the Elbe
Cycling in Germany #12 – Martin Luther Country: Wittenberg on the Elbe
Cycling in Germany #13 – Wörlitz Gardens and the beginning of neo-classicism in Germany
Cycling in Germany #14 – Shades of Gaudi on the Elbe: Hundertwasser
Cycling in Germany – Turgermünde, the prettiest village on the Elbe
Cycling in Germany #16 – Celle & Bremen
Cycling in Germany #17 – Windmills & Dykes
Cycling in Germany #18 – Painted façades from Hann. Münden to Höxter
Cycling in Germany #19 – Bernkastel on the Moselle: a hidden treasure
Cycling in Germany #20 – Trier & the Binoculars Scare
 
Cycling along the Danube – A Renaissance festival in Neuburg, Bavaria
Cycling along the Danube – Watch out for trains!
Cycling along the Danube – Regensburg & Altmuhle
Cycling along the Danube –  The Weltenburg Narrows
Cycling along the Danube – from its source to Ehingen
Cycling along the Danube – Ehingen to Ulm
Cycling along the Danube – Singmarigen to Beuron
Cycling along the Danube – Binzwangen to Mengen including  Zwiefalten
Eurovelo 6 – Cycling around Lake Constance
Eurovelo 6 – Moos to Stein am Rhein and Steckborn on Lake Constance
Heading home to France after a month’s cycling holiday
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46 Responses to Cycling in Germany #14 – Shades of Gaudi on the Elbe: Hundertwasser

  1. Pingback: Postcard from Germany: Henri II far from home – Henri II | B l o i s D a i l y P h o t o

  2. Marvelous architecture in that school, particularly!

  3. Barb Hall says:

    Every post is so fascinating – can’t believe you are doing all this and cycling too!

  4. We first learned of Hundertwasser on our honeymoon in 1976. He had a big exhibit at an art museum in Amsterdam. Returning home to the USA, I bought several books on his work. I never realized that some of his designs were actually built. You have given us a new destination.

    • Rosemary Kneipp says:

      Wow! I had never heard of him before. You’ll love the buildings. Photos really don’t do them justice. Make sure it’s a Sunday or school holidays for the school.

  5. Helen says:

    What a contrast in architecture in the past 2 days. Hope it cools down a little for you.

  6. Susan Walter says:

    I’d never heard of him either. Thanks for introducing him. The buildings are great fun. I must admit I smell theosophy and Rudolf Steiner, but his Wiki entry doesn’t mention any sort of connection, so I assume it’s just ‘convergent evolution’.

  7. Pingback: Cyclng in Germany #15 – Turgermünde, the prettiest village on the Elbe | Aussie in France

  8. Anna Grigorova says:

    I love his eccentric and provocative architecture!
    Please,plan a trip to Vienna and ask Jean Mishell to bay you a coffe in “Kunst und Cafe” on the ground floor of Hudertwasser House.Thay shows a film in which Hundertwasser personally leads you through this extravagant apartments house.
    Don’t miss to have fun with the interior design in ”Hundertwasser Village” and a special toilet room.
    By the way our photo on Homeexchange profile was taken in Kunst und Cafe…

    • Rosemary Kneipp says:

      What a pity we didn’t know about Hundertwasser House when we were in Vienna! If we ever go back we’ll go to Kunst und Cafe!

  9. Anna Grigorova says:

    Sorry,mistake! I meen to buy you a coffee

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