I took the train from Budapest to Vienna, arriving in vienna in the early afternoon. It took me a while to get to my hostel from the train station, but once i had arrived i was more than pleased. I was staying in an apartment with my own room, which was really nice. I took a little while to check my email and then i was off to explore the city. I must disclose that i was really excited to see Vienna due to the fact that in my second year of school we were given a project to create a house based off the style of a certain architect. We all drew from a hat, some of us receiving architects with more modern styles and some of us (the less fortunate) recieved styles that were.. the opposite of modern. I recieved the architect Otto Wagner, whose works dot the city of Vienna creating its own specific style.
My first stop was to get off at the Karlsplatz Stadtbahn Station via the metro. This was my introduction into the city center..albeit a little off , but near to two buildings i was really wanting to see. The first was the station itself shown above, and the second was the Secession Building which you will see below. Let me take this moment to praise the Vienna public transportation system. It was fantastic with metros/trams/buses that could take you through the entire city... even out into the suburban areas.
My next stop after the metro station was to move into the city center, walking along the giant pedestrian street snaking its way through the city. I came upon the the Cathedral, Stephansdom or St. Stephens and took a quick jaunt in. This seemed to be a highly visited tourist spot as i was surrounded on all sides by flashing cameras and peace signs. I snapped a few pictures and quickly exited avoiding the mass of people. I continued to walk around, but when the sun set, i decided to head back and sleep. The next day i awoke only to find the sky grey and dark, brimming with rain and decided it would be a museum day.
Vienna has a giant museum complex, with a host of different museums one could access as well as a myriad of different stores, studios and exhibitions, all hosted in this gigantic complex. The museum that i had my eye on was the MUMOK, the modern art museum in Vienna. Their current exhibition was on an amazing Austrian artist: Maria Lassnig. Google the bitch, her work is wonderful. There was also a really interesting exhibit on architecture in the 70's and the use of inflatable technology into architectural theory. Next door i spotted a sign for an exhibit named The Porn Identity. I couldnt resist. It was all about the way that porn is becoming more mainstream into our everyday lives, whether its through porn copying famous movies (say amelie!.. i had no idea) or pornstars on tv etc. It was very interesting.. they also had various props etc which is what you are seeing above.. i have no idea how it works. The rain stopped for a while so i decided to go see the Secession building.. it was really lovely, i especially enjoyed the owls. I stayed out later that evening, taking in all Vienna in the evening.
above are a few pictures i took of the apartment i was staying in. The next day i was hoping the weather would be a little more pleasant, but alas i was not in store for blue skies. I travelled to the city center again to go to the tourist information spot because i couldnt figure out how to get to a church that was on the outskirts on the city. I had tried to find bus 60A but to no avail, so i was hoping they could help. They sent me in the completely wrong direction and i got lost for 2 hours, but it all worked out because i got to see parliament, university, city gardens and a whole slew of other things. I decided to give up on the church and head back towards the center to catch the metro. My next stop was to head to Otto Wagner's Postsparkasse (Post Office Savings Bank) which is his most well known building. I used this building as a precedent when we did the project in my second year so i was glad to finally be able to see it in person.
My next stop was to cross the Danube and go to a church that i could find: Donaucity Kirche ( Christ the Hope of the World Church) This church was recently built as you can probably tell and has taken a lot of flak. I enjoyed it, but there was too much going on going on inside for my liking.
After this church, i grabbed a quick bite to eat and rejuvinated, decided i would find that f'ing church.. it was my last day in Vienna and i wasnt going to leave without seeing it. So i made my own plan... tourist guide be damned and somehow managed my way out there (metro to bus to bus to bus to walking uphill for a mile) but i did it! Designed by Fritz Wotruba, an Austrian sculptor, the church is made of 152 concrete blocks positioned in different ways. I though it was a gorgeous church, but ive read many negative opinions about it as well. When i was walking around, a man walked up and started spurting off german at me and i told him in spoke english (in german) and instantly he switched saying this building was a waste of materials and a monstrosity. I just shrugged and laughed and said i didnt share his opinion on the building. He shrugged and told me good day. I think the most interesting aspect to the church was just the idea of walking through sculpture.. architecture usually isnt thought of that way.
I walked down the hill, took my buses back and hopped back on the metro.. eventually ending up at the Secession Building once again before switching to the tram back to my hostel. It was a beautiful ending to my time in Vienna... however at that point i started to feel a little weak...little did i know the next day i would be feeling like death warmed up. At that present moment though i couldnt have been happier.
Thus marks the end of my Vienna post.. i should be updating with my time in prague/copenhagen/amsterdam/paris in the next few days so be looking out for those.