When visiting a picturesque Salzkammergut region, you can easily stumble upon a very strange looking building partially hidden between the trees and the biggest European bronze sculpture named the Bulls of Fuschl. This modern complex of buildings with a huge statue is probably not something you would expect to see in a fairytale-like scenery of the Austrian mountainous and lake region.
This complex is built for the headquarter of the biggest and most famous Austrian company Red Bull. I am sure that almost all of you have heard of a drink that “gives you wings”.
The headquarter is located in a small Austrian town of only 1500 inhabitants called Fuschl am See, and the town is on the shore of beautiful Fuschlsee, in the perfectly natural setting of the Alps. A co-owner of the Red Bull company Dietrich Mateschitz ,known for its avid patronage of arts, has decided not to commission an architect to build the headquarter for his company, but an artist. Jos Pirkner, a Tyrolean sculptor and artist planned, designed and created everything: the buildings, the garden and the artworks down to the smallest detail. It took him eight years to finish this task.
The complex consists of two volcano-shaped buildings surrounded by an artificial lake, from one side, and the beautiful garden, from the other side. The artist used the volcano shape as a symbol of the most energetic occurrence on our planet. The buildings for about 700 employees were built almost exclusively from a glass, basalt, granite and metal - a reference to the volcanic origin. The complex of the headquarter is not a conventional, restrained-neutral architecture, but something out of the ordinary, something that can make energy visible. The architect Pirkner, a long-time friend of Mateschitz, had neither the financial nor artistic constraints to fulfil that goal.
A 22.5-meter-long statue of the bull flock called the “Bullen von Fuschl” is the central masterpiece of the entire complex. The herd of 14 bronze bulls looks like they are storming from the volcano shaped buildings. This impressive work of art is considered the largest bronze sculpture in Europe. It is an eye-catcher for anyone passing by. Jos Pirkner has used 57 tons of clay and 25 tons of bronze to sculpt a gigantic sculpture and needed six years to finish it.
The headquarter is not open to the public. However, everyone can take a walk around the garden and enjoy the architecture of the complex and admire the Bulls of Fuschl – the biggest European sculpture.
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