Friedensreich Hundertwasser

We suffocate in our cities because the air is polluted and there is not enough oxygen. 
The vegetation which gives us breath and life - we kill it. 
Our life becomes unworthy of human beings. 

We pass along grey, sterile facades of buildings, and we do not realise that our houses are prison cells. 

To survive, each of us has to act. 

You must yourself become the author of your environment. You can not wait for a permit or an authority. Not only your clothes and your rooms, but the face of the building in which you live belong to you. Any kind of individual creation is better than this sterile death.

You have the right to transform your window and the outside wall around it as far as your arms can reach until your house fits you. 

Regulations which are contrary to this right to windows or that forbid or restrict it, should be ignored. 

Housing is a human right. 

It is your duty to give all the help you can to the growing vegetation. 

The horizontal belongs to nature - the vertical may belong to men. 

All that is white in winter must be green in summer. All that gets wet with rain, all horizontal surfaces under the sky, belong to the realm of plant life. 

Woods shall grow on streets and roofs. One must again be able to breathe woodland air in the cities. 

The relationship between men and trees must gain a religious dimension. 

Then one will understand that it is true if we say: The straight line is godless and immoral.


Written February 27, 1972, in Düsseldorf on the occasion of the TV-broadcast “Wünsch dir was” (Make a Wish).

Published in:

Umwelt. Eine kritische Stellungnahme. (Environment. A critical comment.) Friedensreich Hundertwasser - HA Schult. edited by JUNIOR Galerie: Goslar/Germany (Italian, German)

Exhibition catalogue for Haus der Kunst, Munich 1975. Glarus/Switzerland: Gruener Janura AG, 1975, pp. 366-367

Österreicher, die der Welt gehören. (Austrians who belong to the world) edited by Mobil Oil Austria AG, Vienna. Vienna: Brüder Rosenbaum Verlag, 1979, p. 94 (German, Text version of 1979)

Catalogues of the World Travelling Museum Exhibition 1975-1987: French edition: Paris, Luxembourg, Marseille, Cairo, 1975; Copenhagen, Dakar, 1976; Montreal, Brussels, 1978. English edition: Tel Aviv, Reykjavik, 1976; Cape Town, Pretoria, Rio de Janeiro, São Paulo, Brasilia, Caracas, 1977; Mexico City, Toronto, 1978; Rome, Høvikodden, 1980; Helsinki, 1981; London, 1983. German edition: Warsaw, 1976; Pfäffikon/Lake Zurich, 1979; Cologne, 1980; Vienna, Graz, 1981. Japanese / English edition: Tokyo, 1977.

Schurian, Walter (ed.): Hundertwasser - Schöne Wege, Gedanken über Kunst und Leben. (Beautiful Paths - Thoughts on Art and Life) Munich: Deutscher Taschenbuch Verlag (dtv), 1983, pp. 180-181 and ed. 2004 (Munich, Langen Müller Verlag), pp. 232-233 (German)

Das Hundertwasser Haus (The Hundertwasser House). Vienna: Österreichischer Bundesverlag/Compress Verlag, 1985, pp. 100-103 (German)

Rand, Harry: Friedensreich Hundertwasser. Cologne: Taschen, 1991, p. 168, abridged edition 1993 and edition 2003, p. 146

Information Kit for Hundertwasser-Path, Fernwärme Wien, Vienna, 2009 (German)

Hundertwasser. New York: Parkstone Press International, 2008, p. 140

Hirsch, Andreas (ed.): Hundertwasser - The Art of the Green Path, Exhibition catalogue KunstHausWien. Munich: Prestel Verlag, 2011, p. 162 (excerpt)

Regentag-Wassergläser für das Leben, Rutesheim: Bernd Wörner Druckerei und Verlag 2011, S. 70

KunstHaus Abensberg, Abensberg, 2014, p. 115 (German)

Hundertwasser, Exhibition catalogue for nordiska akvarellmuseet, Skärhamn, 2021, p. 169 (Swedish, English)