Walter Pichler, <i>TV-Helm (Tragbares Wohnzimmer)</i>, 1967; <i>Großer Raum (Prototyp 3)</i>, 1966-67 © © Sammlung Generali Foundation–Permanent Loan to the Museum der Moderne Salzburg; <i>Kompakte Stadt</i>, 1964, Modell, Gips, Kunststoff, Collection Frac Centre, Orléans


Radical: Architecture & Prototypes

The radical and utopian architectural designs by Austrian artist Walter Pichler (1936 Deutschnofen, IT—2012 Vienna, AT) are arguable one of the most idiosyncratic works whose influence is still evident today. Starting from his early utopian architecture to the Prototypes group of works, this exhibition establishes a link to later building projects Pichler has realized. Crossing the disciplines of architecture, design, and sculpture, Pichler’s works always present itself in a distinct language.

His early work was influenced by residencies in Paris, New York, and Mexico and the social and technical innovations of the 1960s, reflected in particular in the iconic Prototypes. At an exhibition at Galerie nächst St. Stephan in Vienna in 1963, together with Hans Hollein, Pichler challenged the traditional view of architecture with manifestos, designs, and scale models of suspended and underground urban landscapes. The two like-minded spirits were interested less in specific projects than in a criticism masked as a utopia on the principle “form follows function.” The Prototypes work group (1966–1969) was developed with innovative materials such as acrylic glass, aluminum, and polyester, pneumatic PVC elements, and audiovisual components. The designation Prototype referred to the idea that these works could move from laboratory models to mass production.

The exhibition is being organized in close collaboration with the estate of the artist and also includes some hitherto unpublished material. Thanks to the permanent loan from the Generali Foundation, the Museum der Moderne Salzburg has the largest collection of Prototypes, which are being made accessible again after many years together with early architectural designs. Buildings by Pichler from 1972 onward in St.Martin in Burgenland in the Southeast of Austria and later construction projects will be presented through newly commissioned films by the artists Sasha Pirker and Werner Kaligofsky, and other material such as photographs by Elfi Tripamer-Pichler.

Curators: Sabine Breitwieser, Director; Christina Penetsdorfer, Assistant Curator, Museum der Moderne Salzburg

Exhibition architecture: Wilfried Kuehn, Kuehn Malvezzi, Berlin/Milan

Tuesday - Sunday: 
10.00 am - 6.00 pm
10.00 am - 8.00 pm
Monday: closed