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Matthias Hoch


Hotel Kobenzl. Die Geschichte eines Hauses.

Exhibition view, Matthias Hoch, “Hotel Kobenzl. Die Geschichte eines Hauses.“, 2016, © Andrew Phelps

The Hotel Kobenzl in Salzburg, located in the hills above the city, is a well-known former luxury hotel. When photographer Matthias Hoch paid a visit there in January of 2014 the premises had already stood vacant for eight years. The rooms are still in good condition, almost untouched and well-preserved. It’s like a journey back in time. The splendor of the former five-star hotel now has something one might affectionately call patina. A surprising twist comes in early 2015: the state and federal governments are desperately seeking space for refugees. It becomes a first-admission facility for refugees. Matthias Hoch has a keen interest in the history of the hotel, the traces of its use, and the question of what was considered luxurious back then. Through the inclusion of archival material, the examination of the hotel takes on a new dimension; the Kobenzl Saga comes to life.
Sampling and seeing and understanding the world is a major concern in Matthias Hoch’s photographic work. And the history of Salzburg’s Hotel Kobenzl serves as a prime example of the transformation our society is currently undergoing.

Matthias Hoch, from the series: “Hotel Kobenzl, Salzburg 2014-16“, Archival Pigment Print, 42 x 63 cm, © 2016 Matthias Hoch / VG Bild-Kunst Bonn