Are there straight lines in nature

: In a higher order

Modern times - straight lines, gray concrete. But Friedensreich Hundertwasser mistrusted the matter-of-fact functionality; she was considered inhuman to him. There were no right angles in his houses and pictures; instead, colorful surfaces, inclined planes, bulbous columns, gilded onion domes and green roof terraces dominated. He saw nature as an unrivaled role model on the way to a better world. Hundertwasser associated his art with a moral claim. The viewers of his works should rethink and redesign their own relationship to nature: "Nature knows no straight lines! There is not a single straight line on the whole human being either. A line pollutes the environment and destroys the soul."

The architect, painter and ecologist Friedensreich Hundertwasser died last Saturday. Round and organic shapes, circles and spirals were the preferred motifs in his work; he saw them as symbols for the cycle of life. Against the tyranny of the ruler and the desolation of our big cities, however, he was not only driven by the concern for a natural, reconciled and healthy existence. Rather, his building and art political mission pursued a far more lofty goal, because, according to Hundertwasser, "even God knows no straight paths!" The program was nothing less than a kind of pantheistic re-enchantment of modernity. The god of small things should return in the ornamental facade art, in the fine surface textures and the variegated details of his work. He saw divine omnipresence as a guarantee for a more humane future.

The peace and environmental activist had his heyday in the seventies and eighties. Government contracts from Germany, Austria and the United Nations, but also clever marketing made the artist popular. There are now 20 Hundertwasser houses in the world, and his work extends as far as Kawakawa in New Zealand, where he had a colorful toilet building built.