Die Zentrale – Wolfgang Thaler

Barcelona, 2011


The walls of Advantage Austria’s office in Barcelona serve as exhibition space for the work of Austrian photographer Wolfgang Thaler.


“Die Zentrale is an accumulation of pictures of interiors. The interiors were shot in administration blocks and office buildings in hotels, businesses, and public institutions in very different parts of the world: Mexico City, Tokyo, Sofia, Wolfsburg, Tel Aviv, Vienna, Belgrade, etc. Yet for the difference in their origins and cultural context, their functions are distinctly similar.

The similarity in their function requires comparable infrastructures – with vestibules, waiting rooms, passages and offices. But for all the similarity in their infrastructures, outwardly they are remarkably dissimilar. The accumulation of these heterogeneous yet homologous interiors is thus rooted in a matrix of functional congruence and formal difference. And it is only this interplay between congruence and difference that provides the organisational structure of the Zentrale, which in turn conjures up thoughts of a space which, viewed as a whole, might correspond to a gigantic complex of buildings or an entire city. This city consists purely of images of interiors and it may be traversed but no-one may leave. This paradoxical city, made up of infinitive inner reaches, has no identifiable place on the world map and yet it is found everywhere; this paradoxical city without a location has a name: Mep’Yuk.”

Andreas Spiegl


Wolfgang Thaler (Salzburg,1969) is a photographer based in Vienna, Austria. His work deals with architectural phenomena and historical topics. Some of his most important projects include publications such as: Aida-Mit reiner Butter on the iconic post-war Viennese coffe-shop chain, a documentation of the Hotel Europa Salzburg, and Virgin Territory, a video about the development of a new district in Munich.

Since 2005 he is co-editor of TOURISTEN- Magazin von Welt and he has recently published Modernism in-Between, a book documenting socialist architecture in former Yugoslavia.





Photos © Wolfgang Thaler

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