Welcome to the fourth installment of The Long(ish) Read: an AD feature which presents texts written by notable essayists that resonate with contemporary architecture, interior architecture, urbanism or landscape design. Ornament and Crime began as a lecture delivered by Adolf Loos in 1910 in response to a time (the late 19th and early 20th Centuries) and a place (Vienna), in which Art Nouveau was the status quo.
Loos used the essay as a vehicle to explain his distain of "ornament" in favour of "smooth and previous surfaces," partly because the former, to him, caused objects and buildings to become unfashionable sooner, and therefore obsolete. This—the effort wasted in designing and creating superfluous ornament, that is—he saw as nothing short of a "crime." The ideas embodied in this essay were forerunners to the Modern movement, including practices that would eventually be at core of the Bauhaus in Weimar.
Mankind has a strange relationship with the darker elements of its history. While some argue that we must consign our greatest mistakes to the past in order to move forward, others believe that ignoring, or refusing to acknowledge, our transgressions dishonors those who suffered – and leaves us vulnerable to repeating them. This ongoing debate has found its latest incarnation in western Austria, where the national government has announced its intention to demolish a seemingly unremarkable yellow house in the riverside town of Braunau am Inn – a house which, despite its unassuming façade, has gained infamy as the birthplace of Adolf Hitler.
feld72 has won the competition for the design of the Neu Leopoldau, a Youth Living residential complex in Leopoldau, a post-industrial area on the outskirts of Vienna. Based on the idea of creating community, the project utilizes overlaying, staggered, and connected spaces and communication areas to facilitate the feeling of a village.
Galeri Petronas, in partnership with the Austrian Embassy in Kuala Lumpur, recently launched a travelling exhibition titled “Getting Things Done : Evolution of the Built Environment in Vorarlberg”.
The exhibition features 70 panels that showcase the evolution and current state of Vorarlberg’s distinctive built environment and GALERI PETRONAS is the first Asian stop and the only venue in Malaysia to host this global-touring exhibition.