Thursday, May 07, 2009

"The straight line is godless and immoral."

#1 secuprophetic quote of the year so far:

"The straight line is godless and immoral."
-Friedensriech Hundertwasserin ,
quoted in Adbusters 83, inside front cover
(note this related Natalia Ilyin quote on inside back cover)

Take that to the bank...and church building.

Note: Great follow-up comments to this post on the Facebook version (who reads blogs any more?) found here.

Later P.S.:
Found the context; amazing:

Not long ago possession of the straight line was a privilege of royalty, wealth, and learning. Today every idiot carries millions of straight lines in his pants pockets.


This imprisoning and entangling jungle of straight lines has to be cleared. Until now man has always cleared away his jungles and freed himself. But to clear a jungle one must first become aware that one is in a jungle. For jungles take from us stealthily, without the knowledge of the population. This time it is the jungle of the straight line.

We should reject any modern architecture in which the straight line or the circle have been employed, if only for a moment or if only in a conceptual way. Because of the straight line the products of design, drawing board, and modeling have become sickeningly sterile and truly senseless. The straight line is godless and immoral. The straight line is not a creative line, but simply a reproductive lie. In it there live not God and human spirit, but a mass created, brainless ant addicted to comfort.

Consequently, straight line structures (whether the line is curving, bending, hanging , or perforating) will not endure. The straight line represents a panic to stay in fashion. The straight line manifests the architects anxiety an(l his desire to evolve into tachism, that is, uninhabitability..

...In 1953 I realized that the straight line leads to the downfall of mankind.

But the straight line is something cowardly drawn with a rule, without thought or feeling; it is a line which does not exist in nature.

And that the line is the rotten foundation of our doomed civilization.

Even if there are certain places where it is recognized that this line is rapidly leading to perdition, its course continues to be plotted.

The straight line is the only sterile line, the only line which does not suit man as the image of God.

The straight line is the forbidden fruit.

The straight line is the curse of our civilization.

Any design undertaken with the straight line will be stillborn. Today we are witnessing the triumph of rationalist knowhow and yet, at the same time, we find ourselves confronted with emptiness. An aesthetic void, desert of uniformity, criminal sterility, loss of creative power.

Even creativity is prefabricated.

We have become impotent. We are no longer able to create. That is our real illiteracy.

-Hundertwasserin, full article here


  1. Just for the record, I had never heard of this Hundertwasserin thing till reading it on your blog right now.
    Natalia Ilyin

  2. Natalia:

    Thanks for commenting.

    It was new to me, too.

    Nice blog!


Hey, thanks for engaging the conversation!