March 23, 2012

Hundertwasser Public Toilets and Boat, Kawakawa

Alex has reached Bruges and next stop is Salzburg. (
He might be skipping Vienna which is sad as I have always liked Hundertwassers architecture there. I even looked at some pictures of his famous apartment block there this week 
Today, my friends sister, Miranda, wrote this post about Hundertwassers designing the public toilets in Kawakawa, NZ. Some great pictures....And memories of our time living up north.  Wherever you live in the world, public toilets probably don't come better than this. Go visit to see ALL the photos...and better still, visit Kawakawa. 

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Hundertwasser Public Toilets and Boat, Kawakawa

Miranda (NZ)

Entrance to the Hundertwasser Public Toilets, Kawakawa

When Frederick Hundertwasser offered to design the upgrade of the old public toilets in Kawakawa's central township in 1998, I wonder if he knew the impact it would have on the community?   Perhaps he did...and what an immensely fruitful gesture it's turned out to be.
You might wonder what the internationally renowned Austrian artist and architect's connection was with this little town in the north of New Zealand.   Apparently he was so enchanted with New Zealand when he visited to mount an exhibition in the 1970's that he decided to make Aoteoroa (ie NZ) his second home.   He purchased an 'isolated rural property on the Waikino peninsula on the Waikare Inlet east of Kawakawa.'*

The Hundertwasser Community Toilets, main street, Kawakawa viewed from  Bay of Islands Vintage Railway carriage 

Hundertwasser ' loved the informality of the area and the freedom to walk the streets of the Kawakawa township anonymously.'*


  1. A bit of name history: his real name was Friedrich Stowasser. He later named himself Friedensreich Regentag Dunkelbunt Hundertwasser, which is German for Reign of Peace (or rich in peace) RainyDay DarkColourful HundredWaters.
    While I am not a huge fan of his paintings, I must admit his architectural works are quite impressing, and I did not know about these public toilets until your post.

    1. That's something I didn't know either. Quite a character!

  2. Many thanks for alerting me to this little-known element of Hundertwasser's work. A real delight! :-)


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