… and other places worth visiting 2014 (recommended by Wolfgang Hofkirchner*)


Music Performances

On Friday, 25 April 2014, 19:30, the klangforum Wien gives Hans Zender, 33 Veränderungen über 33 Veränderungen, at Wiener Konzerthaus. This composition contains modern variations of Ludwig van Beethoven’s variations of a Viennese waltz by Anton Diabelli. It broaches the issue of how the new relates to the old. You will have emergent experiences.
Read more about the work. Hear 2 audio samples.
Tickets available from 10 March 2014 on (http://konzerthaus.at/).
However, this event competes with our social dinner.

For friends of classical music: Osterklang (Bach, Mozart, Händel, Charpentier, Beethoven, composers of Russian sacral choir music as well as Schubert, von Weber, Nicolai, Wagner, Strauß (Sohn), von Suppé, Léhar, Heuberger from 13 to 20 April 2014).

Imago Dei is another series of cultural events hosted by Klangraum Krems (Minoritenkirche). According to your stay in Austria you may choose one. Krems is a lovely town one hour ride from Vienna. If you decide to go there, you should make a day trip. You will have free entrance to a lot of  exhibitions ((the Karikaturmuseum Krems; the Kunsthalle Krems with various exhibitions; and the Ernst Krenek Forum, a museum about the Austrian composer Krenek). Every hour there is a train. See how to get there (in German only, but more detailed and including useful links).



In the Essl Museum which shows contemporary art you can visit an installation of Deborah Sengl on The Last Days of Mankind after Karl Kraus. The Essl Museum is located in Klosterneuburg, a town adjacent to Vienna, and is reachable by a free bus shuttle from Vienna City at Albertina (vis-à-vis the State Opera). The bus ride takes about 20 minutes.
Karlheinz Essl was Austrian entrepreneur and founded the first Do-it-yourself-Market in Austria (bauMax – suffering from its expansion to Eastern Europe). He established a collection of modern art produced, in particular, by Austrian artists. He built his own museum. The building was architected by Austrian architect Heinz Tesar whom I like for his design philosophy. Now there are big discussions going on. bauMax wants the State to buy the whole collection. Otherwise it is in danger of going bankrupt.  

The Vienna MuseumsQuartier (MQ) is said to be one of the largest art and culture complexes of the world. Programme during the conference. You can enter it from 2 subsequent stops of metro U2 between Rathaus and Karlsplatz.

Technisches Museum Wien, Vienna’s museum of technology, has an exhibition on Space. The museum is a tram ride’s distance from Westbahnhof.

At Judenplatz in the city centre, there is a branch of the Jewish Museum Vienna – the Museum Judenplatz. It gives evidence of thriving Jewish communities in the Middle Ages which were put to an end in 1420/21. Ruins of the then-destroyed Synagogue were found at recent excavations at that place. Rachel Whiteread designed the Holocaust Memorial in 2000, also known as Nameless Library, in the middle of the Judenplatz.
A family portrait of Amy Winehouse is part of the current exhibitions.

At the back of the State Opera house, vis-á-vis the Albertina, you can find the Monument Against War and Fascism, produced by Austrian sculptor Alfred Hrdlicka. Amongst others it shows a Jew forced to scrub political slogans off the street in 1938.


Urban Development

“aspern Vienna’s Urban Lakeside” is one of Europe’s biggest urban development projects. Take metro U2 from Schottentor to end-stop Seestadt and have a look.

The Vienna University of Economics and Business moved during winter 2013/2014 to a new campus. That campus is claimed to be one of the largest university building sites of the world. Renowm architects were part of the project. Go and visit the campus. It is open to the public. Take metro U2 and get out at stop Messe-Prater.

In the vicinity of the so-called UNO-City (take U1) – the United Nations headquarters was a project of then chancelor Bruno Kreisky – you can see architect Dominique Perrault’s DC Tower 1 which shall be accompanied by a smaller one that shall reflect the structure of the facade of the first tower.
Close to the metro you can find a building which is used as a catholic church (“Christus, Hoffnung der Welt”). This Donaucity church was designed by Heinz Tesar again. I like that building; its outside appearance is not presumptious and it provides you with a nice atmosphere when you are inside. In particular, the way the light finds into the inside is outstanding.

Another church that is very different (in a positive sense, as to my taste) is the Kirche am Steinhof built by Otto Wagner, a Jugendstil church. You can visit it every Saturday from 15:00 to 17:00 or every Sunday from 12:00 to 16:00.

If you never have heard about the urban politics in “Red Vienna” (controlled by the Social Democratic Party) in the time between the two world wars, you should visit the Karl-Marx-Hof. It’s close to metro stop Heiligenstadt (U4). The social democrats taxed the rich and from that tax they built residential buildings for the poor. Such a kind of policy is something that is needed in the crises we face today!
The flats were for the first time equipped with an inside water toilet. At the same time Austrian architect Margarete Schütte-Lihotzky invented the Frankfurt Kitchen – a way of furniture adjusted to rationalising operations in the kitchen (in Austria called “American Kitchen”). Schütte-Lihotzky joined the Communists and the resistance movement.


*) These recommendations are subject to my personal taste and need not to suit your taste. I accept that there is a diversity of tastes. My hope is though that some of you might find my recommendations helpful. The same holds for political opinions uttered here. They are my personal opinions.