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Heldenberg Museum

Heldenberg, or “heroes’ mount”, is a well known curiosity in Austria. Built in the 19th century in the town of Kleinwetzdorf by a militarist and army supplier as a private memorial to Austria’s war heroes, it features a neoclassical building set in extensive gardens dotted with the busts of officers. Also in the grounds is a burial chamber for the patron and Field-Marshall Radetzky. In 2005 the Heldenpark was restored and a new extension built in which to house temporary exhibitions in the summer months (on themes unrelated to the military). This new section is buried mainly underground, an arrangement that not only asserts its separate identity but also impinges as little as possible on the existing structures. All that is visible above ground are the entrance and exit, and three differently shaped skylights. The northern entrance projects from the hill like a slightly raised glass pulpit. Inside, attention focuses entirely on the quality of the space; the visitor enters into another world. He meanders through a series of variously shaped white rooms, pierced intriguingly by carefully placed openings – part light shaft, part viewing aperture – that illuminate this -abstract continuum of space. The building systems in this low-budget project are restricted to flexible strip lighting on the ceilings and a ventilation system fitted in the central skylight. Even the existing toilet block was kept and revamped.

This article is taken out of the following magazine:
DETAIL 4/2006

Light and Interiors

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