Missing Link

19 / 04 / - 28 / 06 / 2002
Exhibition / Discussion

Overview and documentation of the work from Vienna-based Arbeitsgemeinschaft
(working group) "Missing Link" (1970-80)

Hutobjekt Asyleum (1976)

1. 2.
3. 4.
1. 2.: Hutobjekt Asyleum (1976):  construction and skin
3.: Aus dem Leben der Obdachlosen in ihren unterirdischen Quartieren, photos by Hermann Drawe,
from: Emil Kläger, Durch die Wiener Quartiere des Elends und Verbrechens. Ein Wanderbuch aus
dem Jenseits
, Vienna 1908
4.: Hutobjekt Asyleum, interior view with photos by Hermann Drawe.

Arbeitsbericht Projekte 1970 – 72
Karl 365 (1971)
16. November: Eine Utopie in neun wirklichen Bildern (1972)
Treffen auf dem Feld (1972)
Via Nostalgia: Straßenarbeit (1972/73)
STtilleben Weltatrappe (1972/73)
Die andere Seite (1973)
Die verstoßene Stadt (1974)
Asyleum – Großes Hutobjekt (1976
Via Trivialis Fünf Aspekte zur Straße
Wiener Studien
Comments in Architecture (1980)



The design of the hat object grew out of the desire to illustrate the historical dimension of an urban area by means of a structure that was both denotative and connotative.

A commonplace article was enlarged to the point where it became an object that one could enter. An item of clothing literally became built form. Inside the hat, a display of photographs depicted the life and times of those inhabitants of the city whose hats were their only homes. The photographs were taken in 1908 in the sewer system and in the underground canals of the Vienna River below the Viennese fruit market. They depict the now-forgotten counterparts to Vienna's cultural splendour at the turn of the century.

In 1908 Franz Joseph I entered the seventh year of his reign. Universal suffrage for men was introduced in the Austrian half of the monarchy that same year. In 1908 Karl Kraus wrote, among other things, "Apokalypse" and "Von den Sehenswürdigkeiten" in the Fackel. Adolf Loos published "Ornament und Verbrechen" and Egon Schiele exhibited for the first time. The monumental tunnel under the Stadtbahn (the city railroad network) completed the regulation of the Vienna River. The Stadbahn had been in service for ten years. Otto Wagner's two apartment buildings on the Linke Wienzeile Avenue, the jewels of the grand boulevard which was supposed to stretch from Karlsplatz to Schönbrunn were also ten years old. A 'Foundation for the Erection of Housing for the Lower Classes" built a few tenements for the "less privileged" populace. The Viennese Municipal Asylum for the Homeless, on the other hand, housed 60,000 people. A further 500,000 lived in private asylums. Hundreds of tramps lived and slept in the subterranean sewage system.

The Hat Object stood in Vienna's fruit market on the Linke Wienzeile avenue, above the vaults of the Vienna River and the City Railroad tunnels, as part of an exhibition held during the summer of 1976.

From: 13 IAUS Austrian New Wave. Architecture 1980.
Published by The Institute for Architecture and Urban Studies, New York 1980.

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