Art object in front of Haus des Meeres Vienna ウィーンの「海の家」前の新しいオブジェ

There is a new art object at Fritz-Grünbaum-Platz in the 6th district of Vienna. That is a small square in front of Haus des Meeres (Aquarium). The object is made of wood, was designed by Bianca Gamser and is called “Still Frieden (Still Peace)”. In order to talk about it, one has to first talk about Haus des Meeres. As I have mentioned, across the street from this object is Haus des Meeres.

That building was originally not an aquarium from the beginning but rather an anti aircraft cannon tower of Nazi Germany during the Second World War. The war ended but unfortunately this building could not easily be demolished because of its extraordinary material strength. Therefore it began to be used as an aquarium. In 1991 the uppermost part of the external wall was painted with a design by the American artist Lawrence Weiner showing the words “Smashed to pieces – In the still of the night”. 2019 because there was a new restaurant constructed on the roof, it was decided to change the words on the fassade.

Now we return to the art object by Bianca Gamser. Her object reminds us of Lawrence Weiner’s words. Not visible from the outside, one has to enter in order to see those words. On the uppermost parts of the inside walls these words can be seen as a mirror image. Standing inside the object is basically the same as standing inside Haus des Meeres. Since the words were written outside on the fassade, inside the object it becomes a mirror image. That means the wood surrounds the building and makes an impression from the outside. You can think of it like a stamp. I think that it is quite purposeful and carries multi faceted meaning. The object will be on display until June 26th 2022.

 ウィーン6区のフリッツ グリューンバウム広場に新しいオブジェが建ちました。「Haus des Meeres 海の家(水族館)」のすぐ前の小さな広場です。この木製のオブジェはビアンカ ガムザー女史(Bianca Gamser)の作品で、「Still Frieden(静 平和)」という題です。この作品について語る前に、すぐ前に建つ「海の家」について書かねばなりません。

 この建物は初めから水族館であったのではなく、元は第二次世界大戦中に、敵の爆撃機を攻撃するために、ナチスドイツ軍が建てたものです。大戦は終わりましたが、この建物はあまりにも頑丈に造られていたため、撤去が不可能となったのです。そのため、水族館として再使用されているのです。1991年に、この外壁の上部に、アメリカの芸術家ロレンス ワイナー氏(Lawrence Weiner) によって、”Smashed to pieces – In the still of the night(粉々に叩き壊された – 夜の静けさの中に)”という文章が記されました。しかし、2019年、最上階にレストランが開業した際、この文章は他の言葉に変えられたのです。

 さて、ここでビアンカ ガムザー女史のオブジェに話を戻しましょう。彼女のオブジェは、私達にロレンス ワイナー氏の文章を思い出させるものとなっています。外からではなく、内側からワイナー氏の言葉を見ることができるのです。オブジェの中に入ると、上部にこの言葉が鏡に映ったように記されています。オブジェの中に立つと、「海の家」の中にいることになります。ですから、外壁に記された文章を内側から見るということになり、鏡に映ったように逆さなのです。つまり、個々の木材は、外側から建物を取り囲んでいるということです。ハンコを思い浮かべることもできるでしょう。とても意義のある、幾重にも深い作品だと思います。2022年6月26日までの展示だそうです。

Entrance to the object.
Sign next to the entrance.
Looking out of the entrance from the inside.
Looking up from inside
Haus des Meeres behind the trees.
Haus des Meeres seen from
Mariahilferstrasse (Nelkengasse).
Sign at Fritz-Grünbaum-Platz.
The writing says that he was a popular comedian
and a victim of the Holocaust.
Kabarett in German speaking countries
is like standup Comedy.
Always his art of humour, satire, irony, etc.
is held in high regard.
That such a popular person
had to perish under such inhumane cirumstances
breaks my heart.
「フリッツ グリューンバウム広場」の看板。
下の看板には、フリッツ グリューンバウムがコメディアンで、

Pictures by Yuka Simeno, April 2022 in Vienna.

Typical April weather in Vienna ウィーンの4月らしいお天気

Glorious Cherry tree in full bloom.

Here in Vienna the weather is constantly changing right now. One day itis quite beautiful, rainy the next day and the temperature also has significant swings. That should not be considered unusual however because there is a saying here in Austria that April weather is very unstable. Only recently there have been unusual weather patterns maybe due to climate change and it has not been as the common saying states. I should actually be happy that this April has typical weather patterns. When I cannot adapt to the changes, I want to listen to the Beatles song “Rain” in my head. “Rain, I don’t mind. Shine, the weather’s fine…”.


Seating benches at Museumsquartier
have turned orange this season.
New sign at construction site of Loquaiplatz
depicting how the park will look once finished.
I look forward to the completion.

Pictures by Yuka Simeno. April 2022 in Vienna.

Spring at Burggarten 王宮庭園の春

Sweet buds of Peony

Yesterday in Vienna it was quite beautiful weather. Daytime maximum was just over 20 degrees Celsius and the sun was shining brightly. After a long time I went for a walk to Burggarten and it was already in full Spring season.


Bees coming to the open blossoms and working diligently.
People relaxing.
Juicy young greens.
A large tree provides cozy shade.
Beautiful flowers in a flowerbed.

Pictures by Yuka Simeno, April 14th 2022 in Vienna

Maybe the last Spring for “Loquaiplatz” もしかしたら最後の「ロクヴァイ広場」の春

Now the Magnolias at Loquaiplatz are in full bloom.
Sign at one entrance to Loquaiplatz.

Yesterday I wrote that Loquaipark in the 6th district of Vienna is now being renewed. After writing yesterday’s post I read on the internet that not only is the park space being renewed but also the name might possibly be changed. As shown in the picture above, the square including the park is named after Ferdinand Loquai, who was the head of the 6th district. However because of his antisemitic past, there are people arguing that a public space in Vienna should not carry his name. Therefore right now this matter is being discussed and the name of this square might possibly changed or alternatively the name remains but with a sign clearly stating his antisemitic past.

 昨日、ウィーン6区のロクヴァイ公園が改装工事中であることを書きました。その後、インターネットで、ここは改装だけでなく、名称も変わる可能性があることを知りました。上の写真の立て札の通り、ここは、かつての6区の区長フェルディナント ロクヴァイに因んで名付けられています。ところが、ロクヴァイは反ユダヤ主義者だったことから、その人の名前を地名にするのは好ましくない、という意見があるのだそうです。そのため、現在、他の名称に変えるか、あるいはロクヴァイの名を残す場合、立て札等に、彼が反ユダヤ主義者だったことを記すようにするか、のいずれかで検討中とのことです。

Directly at Loquaiplatz there used to be a Synagogue.
It is written on this commemorative plaque
that the Synagogue was destroyed during
“Reichskristallnacht” November 10th, 1938.
On the opposite side of the building
seen in the picture above, there is a streetlight.
When it is dark, looking up from standing directly underneath,
a star of David shines its light.
Walking around in Vienna,
quite often one can find those small squares on the street.
Each metal square features names and dates of their lives.
They are Jewish victims of the Second World War.
Those people used to live at the location
of those metal squares and were deported.
I always am mindful and for their honour
take great care not to step on those squares.

Pictures by Yuka Simeno, April 9th, 2022 in Vienna.

Loquai park being renewed ロクヴァイ公園が新しくなります

The park at Loquaiplatz in the 6th district in Vienna is now closed for renewal works. I heard that soon this space would be renewed and apparently now it has started. Very often I passed by when talking a walk and since I knew many bushes and trees, it is kind of sad to say goodbye to some of them. Buddhism teaches us that everything is in constant change. I should look forward to this park reopening in new splendor. In order to not let the loss of those disappeared plants to be in vain, we thank them and wish for it to become a beautful park.


Pictures by Yuka Simeno, April 8th 2022 in Vienna

Getting better 良くなりつつあるお天気

Today’s weather was the opposite of yesterday, it was quite nice weather. The temperature was still a little cold but it is supposed to get warmer every day. The paused Spring can finally resume.


This tree was full of white blossoms until recently.
Now it is full of green having emerged.

Pictures April 4th 2022 in Vienna.

April sleet in Vienna みぞれの降る4月のウィーン

People walking somewhat bent over due to cold sleet.

Even though cherries are blossoming here in Vienna it suddenly got colder. The sky is grey and yesterday afternoon there was sleet all of a sudden. Due to unexpected bad weather some people did not carry an umbrella and bent over a little walking in a hurry on the street. I presume plants were taken by surprise too. Hopefully nice weather will come back soon.


Mariahilferstrasse Vienna is a well-known shopping street.
Even though it was a Saturday afternoon
not many people were around because of cold sleet.

Pictures by Yuka Simeno, April 2nd, 2022 in Vienna.