Gugging House of Artists – Klosterneuburg, Austria - Atlas Obscura

Gugging House of Artists

Klosterneuburg, Austria

This outsider art house has gone from clinical creation to astounding artwork.  


On the edge of the grounds of a former mental hospital, which was founded in 1885 and closed down in 2007, sits a colorful house of outsider art, known as the Gugging House of Artists.

Its history lies back to the early 50s when a young psychiatrist named Leo Navratil began to conduct drawing tests for diagnostic purposes among his patients. In these diagnostic works, Navratil found art. 

In 1981, Navratil invited a group of his talented patients to move from common hospital units to a special pavilion. With that, the group of Gugging Artists was born, living and working at the House of Artists and changing its appearance with expressive paintings over decades. Among the artists that have worked within Gugging House are such profilic creators as August Walla, Oswald Tschirtner, and Johann Hauser.

Today the Gugging artists are no longer known as patients. The house continues to accommodate special artists who create exceptional artworks, which can be seen in museums the world over. 

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January 23, 2012

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