My daughter Francesca is studying the art of Austrian artist and architect Friedensreich Hundertwasser in school. I must admit that I had never heard of this amazing person before encountering her vibrant painting inspired by his work (above), and her enthusiastic articulation of his name—Hundertwasser!—always with an exclamation point—real, or implied.
Born jewish, he suffered under Nazism and joined the Hitler Youth as a subterfuge and means of staying alive. In later years he became a passionate advocate of individualism and bold, bright colors, and raged against the monotony of standardization and mechanization. Sounds like my kind of guy—a proto Wabi-Sabi. He was also an early environmentalist—into composting toilets—and developing mixed-use housing and encouraging “spontaneous” vegetation.
His architecture looks somewhat Gaudi-esque. I love the organic shapes and unrestrained colours. I think I have found a new inspiration.