In the little town of Plochingen, lies an apartment complex created by Hundertwasser.
Friedensreich Regentag Dunkelbunt Hundertwasser, an Austrian man, with his architecture throughout Germany, Austria, Switzerland, and even a public toilet in New Zealand which he considered his "home." (Not the toilet itself, but the country)! Apparently his watch was always set to New Zealand time no matter where he was.
I often keep my watch set to the local time of where I've just traveled. So I guess it's not only me. Are there others? We must investigate.
"Wohen unterm Regenturm" at first glance was a major disappointment because from the outside of the complex, you could only see the tower portion of the building which was clearly identifiable as Hundertwasser.
There was a REWE supermarket in the basement which would be pretty much the equivalent of having a K-Mart at a Frank Lloyd Wright site. Strange. Then again, FLW built a gas station in Cloquet, MN. Rewe is a hilarious place to shop because it's house brand is "Ja!" which makes for funny gift giving, but I digress.
Once inside the courtyard, the disappointment of that initial impression dissolved. Beautiful, colorful madness left me unable to know where to begin photographing. I felt like I had stepped into a Dr. Seuss book. I just randomly pointed my lens and started taking pictures. However, I was conscious of the people who actually live there and wondered what that's like day after day. Goof balls with serious zooming capability clicking away at your house morning, noon and night. I don't suppose you stand in front of the windows in your underwear much.
A condo within the complex was for sale and I was plotting how to pose as a potential real estate buyer in order to work my way inside. But it was so cold and windy and we had a tired baby and a long drive ahead so I quickly quit scheming and instead settled for finding the way to the back gate to shoot from the other side of the complex.
I was so happy to have gotten the experience to not only see but touch his famous columns, and I came away feeling very inspired from all the color energy. There was something also about the texture... the smooth shininess was dazzling. I wondered about the functionality of all that tile and grout on the exterior of the building and whether or not it leaks.
On one hand, the courtyard is a giant breathtaking surprise when you stumble under the arch and enter this alternate hippie place. On the other, it felt a little bit like all the effort was used up there and the outside walls were unworthy of housing such a magnificent treasure. In any case, the aerial view postcard is magnificent although it's a pretty impossible perspective to get first hand. (I smell helicopter tour potential. And I hear the gasps of the poor residents if I leaked this idea).
Definately worth a visit.