Designed by American artist Vito Acconci during celebrations of the city being named European Capital of Culture in 2003, this peculiar landmark, known by locals as the Murinsel (‘Mur island’), is not in fact an island, but a floating platform in the centre of the river. Measuring 50 metres by 20 metres (164 feet by 66 feet), this seashell-shaped structure is connected to land by a footbridge on either side of the river, taking guests to the amphitheatre in the middle and a cafe and playground beneath the domed area.
Built during the 1500s, this is one of Graz’s only renaissance structures and an important piece of architecture from the era. Designed and built by numerous architects, the house contains swooping, ornate arches and a three-storey arcade courtyard. Today, it is mainly used as a function venue for celebratory events.
The beautifully smooth, sweeping curved facade of this stand-out architectural gem is easy on the eyes. Unlike the average place of worship in almost every way, this innovative structure, used primarily as a funeral chapel, was designed by Austrian architects Hofrichter-Ritter.
This striking, bulbous construction, sticking out like a sore thumb on the banks of the River Mur, wouldn’t look out of place in a sci-fi movie: it has even been nicknamed by locals as ‘the friendly alien’. One of Graz’s best modern-art galleries, the Kunsthaus is not just an exceedingly curious piece of architecture but also an innovative exhibition space, housing works from 1960 onwards. Built as part of the European Capital of Culture celebrations in 2003, the structure has received mixed reactions from the public.