Project Teams

Delugan Meissl Associated Architects

Established by Elke Meissl and Roman Delugan in Vienna in 1993, the office practices architecture as the radicalisation of that relational logic in which it recognises the DNA of the discipline itself. In the understanding of the team, which became DMAA Delugan Meissl Associated Architects in 2004 upon the appointment of Dietmar Feistel and Martin Josst as partners, architecture itself is also structured like a language in which meaning is derived from the relationship between its individual elements.

In contrast with other influential architectural approaches of recent decades, DMAA is not satisfied with the mere application of this principle in the form of hermetic linguistic games but rather uses its works to establish the maximum possible number of relationships between architecture and its environment, with a focus on context and the ability to physiologically experience a building. The architectural approach of DMAA demands that conventional spatial boundaries are rejected - both inside and outside its buildings - in favour of sequential experiences with smooth transitions. Despite this emphasis on the physical presence and physiological effect of architecture the works of DMAA constantly create situations in which the immaterial becomes perceptible beyond traditional gestures of pathos. This extensive, original oeuvre, which stretches from such iconic cultural buildings as the Porsche Museum in Stuttgart, the EYE film museum in Amsterdam and the Winterfestspielhaus Erl to numerous innovative residential buildings, led to the award to DMAA of the Grand Austrian State Prize in 2015.

The concept for Austria’s contribution to the 2016 Architecture Biennale was developed by the curator Elke Delugan-Meissl in cooperation with Liquid Frontiers and DMAA.

Paul Kranzler

“Film is fabrication, 25 times a second” said Rainer Werner Fassbinder, both referring to and distancing himself from Jean-Luc Godard’s famous dictum proclaiming the ability of the cinematic medium to portray truth. For the Austrian photographer Paul Kranzler (*1979), photography is a medium of perception - especially if it looks carefully and consistently. For this reason he has photographed many of his subjects repeatedly over longer periods, giving his photographic series both a narrative and a documentary dimension. For Kranzler, the truth of photography lies somewhere between and, at any rate, beyond that of speech.

His black and white and colour photographs primarily portray people and their milieus: youths from in and around Linz or Los Angeles posing with their cars, a retired couple in their substandard one-room apartment who spent many years as the photographer’s neighbours or drop-outs from civilization and other freaks who have withdrawn to the West Virginian countryside.

As a result of the duration and intensity of his work in addressing situations that he himself knows well without being directly part of them, he reveals not only changes but also the tenacity of certain relationships. Kranzler’s view is direct and clear without ever being cold. Rather than stylising people as either heroes or victims he places a special focus on their sovereignty and gives expression to their self-assurance.

The element of wildness and rebellion that is often communicated by these actors and scenarios is registered by Paul Kranzler with particular attention and recorded in his vigorous visual language.

Many of his photographic series have appeared as books and they feature continuously in solo and group exhibitions in Austria and abroad. His photo reportages appear regularly in such well-known print media as “Zeit Magazine”, “Süddeutsche Zeitung Magazine” and “FT weekend” magazine.

For “Places for People” the photographer undertook the task of accompanying the three teams of architects with his camera during several months, documenting their development and implementation work at the three different locations. In contrast with classical architectural photography this visual essay also focuses on people – both those who have fled to Vienna and the architects working with them.


Katharina Boesch, Christine Haupt-Stummer, Andreas Krištof and Viktoria Pontoni have been working together under the name section.a since 2001. They support artists and designers by meeting all the content-related and organisational requirements of contemporary cultural and artistic production. The output and scope of services of the team is correspondingly broad, ranging from exhibitions, publications and museum concepts to product development and consultancy services. The latest of over 160 realised projects provides a perfect example of the team’s holistic way of working: section.a was responsible for the development of the masterplan and spatial programme, the accompaniment of the execution and the design of the opening exhibition of the recently opened Kunsthalle “arlberg 1800”.

section.a has been responsible for the project and production management and, hence, the successful implementation of Austria’s contributions to the last three Art Biennales in Venice. In the context of “Places for People,” section.a is in charge of the areas of sponsorship and finance as well as the production in Venice.


The largest support organisation in the area of basic services, Caritas currently looks after every third asylum seeker in Austria. More than 6,500 people – including 450 unaccompanied underage refugees – are living in accommodation which it operates. In addition to this, 24,500 refugees housed in accommodation provided by private individuals or other bodies are being supported by Caritas’ mobile, regional or ambulant support services. In the past three months alone, around 15,000 voluntary helpers have been involved in Caritas’ programme of providing food and clothing to refugees. They also offer German courses and help with translation.

Alongside these classic forms of providing help which are financed from donations and the public purse, Caritas also operates a series of pilot projects in the area of social business under the umbrella brand “magdas”. These are initiatives whose objective is to tackle social questions using business tools as a means of generating the revenue to make these initiatives self-­financing. The latest and most prominent example of this strategy is “magdas Hotel” which was opened in Vienna at the beginning of 2015. This is a hotel with 70 beds in which guests from all over the world are welcomed by people with a refugee background.

The design and development of each of the projects of “Places for People” was carried out in close cooperation with Caritas which, after their successful adaptation, will also be responsible for their operation.

grafisches Büro

Lettering is at the heart of the diverse activities of “grafisches Büro”, which was established in 2001 by Günter Eder and Roman Breier. Reinforced by the arrival of Marcel Neundörfer in 2006, grafisches Büro develops visual identities for both cultural and commercial clients and finds that this combination is more a source of stimulation than of conflict. One common feature of the team’s work is a tendency towards radical reduction as a means of distilling and visually reinforcing essential content. In this process, lettering is used not only as a set of semantic symbols but also as a counterweight to suggestive images or even as an image in its own right which is also always imbued with an emotional dimension. The effectiveness of grafisches Büro in organising this interplay between information and atmosphere, typography and photography is exemplified by such recent projects as their work for CARITAS’ “Hunger auf Kunst und Kultur” initiative and the “Theater Nestroyhof Hamakom” and their design of the book “by: EOOS - Design zwischen Archaik und Hightech.”

The conceptual strength of the team and its ability to develop intelligent means of winning the required attention for social issues were key reasons for trusting grafisches Büro with the extensive design agenda related to “Places for People”.

art: phalanx

Art and culture are the two specialist core areas of the communications agency with the combative name which was founded in 1998. In addition to such classic services as marketing, PR, project management and fundraising, the company – which currently has ten employees and is led by the theatre expert Susanne Haider and the social scientist and economist Clemens Kopetzky – also conceives and executes its own projects. Alongside productions in such areas as theatre and the visual arts, the spectrum of work has increasingly extended in the past few years into the areas of architecture, urban planning and regional development.

art:phalanx is, for example, responsible for the content and design-based repositioning of the magazine KONstruktiv as it seeks to widen its appeal from its current readership of architects and engineers in order to reach a broader public. As it has taken the initiative to deepen its expertise in the sector of urban and regional development, art:phalanx was given responsibility for the PR and communication work for “Places for People” with the objective of maximising the level of public awareness of the aims of the project.