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Kunsthaus Graz - Set

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  • 20.08.2020
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About Kunsthaus Graz

The "friendly alien"

This year’s design for the series ”Modern architecture in Austria“shows the Kunsthaus Graz, a museum of contemporary art and an impressive landmark of the Styrian capital.

Plans for a museum have been drawn up and then rejected since the 1980s. However, when Graz put in its bid to be the European Capital of Culture 2003, the Kunsthaus, which is part of the Universalmuseum Üoanneum, finally became a reality. The winner of the international design competition was the design by the British architects Peter Cook and Colin Fournier. The striking building incorporates the “Eiserne Haus” (Iron House) on Graz’s Lendkai, which was one of the first cast iron buildings in continental Europe, constructed in 1848. A spectacular blue “bubble” rises above the glazed ground floor, which, among other things, houses the café. A particularly eye-catching feature is the “nozzles”, trunk-like openings to the outside which let in daylight.

Through one of the nozzles you can see the clock tower, and the glazed viewing platform, the “Needle”, offers an impressive view over the whole city.

The Kunsthaus Graz houses exhibitions of international contemporary art from the 1960s to the present over several floors. What is more, by means of light elements, the BIX media façade uses the acrylic outer skin to communicate with its urban surroundings. The nickname “friendly alien” was given to the building by the two architects.