Hot Questions – Cold Storage
Architecture from Austria. The Permanent Exhibition at the Az W
The book accompanying the new permanent display of Architekturzentrum Wien’s own collection.
“With this exhibition, Vienna is enriched by a top attraction.” Christian Kühn, Die Presse
1st edition, 2023
384 pages, 469 color and 53 b/w illustrations
21 x 28 cm
The new permanent display of Architekturzentrum Wien’s (Az W) collection, opened in February 2022, is a milestone in the presentation of architecture and its social dimensions. Now this most comprehensive collection on Austrian architecture of the 20th and 21st centuries, featuring color images of all exhibits, concise texts, and thematic essays, also becomes available in book format.
Hot Questions—Cold Storage takes a fresh look at the country’s architectural culture of the last 150 years, situating it in its cultural, social, political, economic, and technical contexts. Each of the seven chapters is prefaced by one of seven questions of our present, asking, for example, about the impact of financial capitalism on our cities and villages, about how we want to live, or about the contribution architecture can make to our survival on planet earth. These Hot Questions bring to life the Cold Storage, the silent repository of the collection’s holdings. The book offers a multi-perspective narrative that makes visible Austria’s building history with all the developments, ideologies, institutions, objects, places, personalities it comprises. The book also illustrates what the collection of a museum of architecture can achieve. It is far more than mere flotsam and jetsam of history. The social relevance of objects and documents is revealed through questioning and visualization, in connecting research and the museum’s mission to collect.
Angelika Fitz is a cultural theorist and curator and has been director of the Architekturzentrum Wien since 2017.
Monika Platzer is an art historian and has been curator and collection manager of the Architekturzentrum Wien since 1998.
Architekturzentrum Wien is Austria’s museum of architecture and has gained international renown as a public space for exhibiting, discussing, and researching the ways in which architecture and urban development influence and shape our everyday life.