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Wagner, Hoffmann, Loos and Viennese Modernist Furniture Design. Artists, Patrons, Producers

Viennese Modernism around 1900 was a veritable experimental laboratory of design whose creative impulses continue to have substantial influence to this day. Vienna’s artist-architects were among those who paved the way for modern design. The Hofmobiliendepot – Vienna Imperial Furniture Collection presents the leading architects of the Viennese Modernist movement – Otto Wagner (1841–1918), Josef Hoffmann (1870–1956) and Adolf Loos (1870–1933) – as designers of interiors and furniture, exploring their differing approaches to the conception, use, decoration and furnishing of interior spaces. Around the turn of the century in Vienna a creative collaboration had developed between architects, their patrons and furniture producers. The exhibition will thus foreground important examples of these patrons, for example the salonière and journalist Berta Zuckerkandl, and will also focus on the firms that made this furniture. Among the leading companies around 1900 were traditional furnishing establishments such as Friedrich Otto Schmidt and Portois & Fix as well as producers of bentwood furniture like Gebrüder Thonet and J. & J. Kohn. Illustrative examples of iconic Modernist buildings in Vienna such as Otto Wagner’s Postal Savings Bank are integrated into the exhibition in the form of large-scale architectural photographs by Walter Zednicek.

Beyond Klimt : New Horizons in Central Europe

Gustav Klimt is probably the artist most associated with Austrian art. His death in 1918 – the same year as the deaths of Egon Schiele, Koloman Moser, and Otto Wagner – is seen as the end of an era. However, their influence on the art world had waned even before this. Only peripherally affected by the political turmoil, a vibrant art scene developed in the countries of the Austro-Hungarian Empire with artists striving for change. The exhibition at the Lower Belvedere will guide you through this post-Klimt era. The interwar years are characterized by the wish for international connections that transcended new political and ideological boundaries. There was a vibrant exchange of ideas between artists resulting in constructivist, expressionist, and fantastical trends. Cosmopolitan networks emerged among the artists of the former Austro-Hungarian Empire while art magazines made an increasingly important contribution to disseminating these new ideas. The outbreak of the Second World War brought this internationalism to an abrupt end and the sense of a shared culture faded, once again, into the background. The exhibition seeks to reveal the parallels during this period and demonstrate continuity and change in the art of the Austro-Hungarian Empire and its successor nation states. Featuring works by around eighty artists including Josef Capek, Friedl Dicker-Brandeis, Albin Egger-Lienz, Gustav Klimt, Oskar Kokoschka, Koloman Moser, Antonin Prochaska, Egon Schiele, Lajos Tihanyi, and many more. Curator: Alexander Klee

Gustav Klimt

This exhibition marking the 100th anniversary of the death of Gustav Klimt, who also passed away in 1918, honors THE protagonist of Viennese Modernism par excellence, who saw the Secession as a venue for the fight for spiritual and artistic modern art. His highly contested, allegorical Faculty Paintings, which were destroyed during the last days of war in 1945, were seen as a paradigm shift and a credo of a new thematic and formal notion of the fin-de-siècle: spirit and matter, nature and art, as well as Eros and Thanatos constituted the program of his artistic oeuvre. The pictorial works of the avant-gardist Klimt further express a longing for beauty and sensuality. Along with works from the holdings of the Leopold Museum and the Leopold family’s private collection, the presentation will feature exhibits from the Klimt Foundation, works given to the museum as a permanent loan by a Klimt descendant as well as select international loans from private and institutional collections. Thus, the exhibition retraces Klimt’s artistic evolution from an exponent of late Historicism towards one of the most eminent representatives of Viennese Jugendstil. “From Sketch to Painting” – Klimt’s Last Masterpiece The Bride One of the highlights of this presentation is the room curated by Sandra Tretter (Klimt Foundation) devoted to Klimt’s Symbolist painting The Bride. The artist designed his last masterpiece on the basis of numerous drawings and studies, ranging stylistically between Jugendstil and Expressionism. The large-scale group of figures will be shown for the first time in the context of pertinent work drawings and the artist’s only extant sketchbook from 1917. This authentic document from the collection of the Klimt Foundation not only contains pencil sketches for lost Klimt paintings but illustrates in a unique manner the work process behind his unfinished painting The Bride, which was last documented for posterity by the artist’s favorite photographer Moriz Nähr within the intimate setting of Klimt’s Hietzing studio.

Egon Schiele - Pathways to a Collection

2018 is the centenary of Egon Schiele’s death. Marking this occasion, the Belvedere is showing its collection of Schiele paintings with highlights including Eduard Kosmack, Façade of a House, Death and Maiden, Embrace, and Four Trees. Visitors can look forward to an outstanding presentation shedding light on the full extent of the Schiele collection once housed at the Belvedere. The exhibition places a focus on the collection’s history. Curator Kerstin Jesse will answer questions about the works’ acquisition, their subject matter, and the people they portray. Preliminary studies and sketches will also be included. The Belvedere conservation department has been researching Egon Schiele’s works and his painting techniques since 2016 and their findings will be presented in the show. The exhibition presents an opportunity to gain an insight into the artist’s working methods while also offering a fascinating glimpse of his works’ pathways into the museum’s collection. Curator: Kerstin Jesse

Winter Park, Florida
Secrets of Tiffany Glassmaking

Louis Comfort Tiffany (1848–1933) began his work in glass with the same tools and ingredients that had been used by artisans for thousands of years before him. Tiffany took the science of glassmaking, however, and elevated it to an art form of new brilliance and beauty. Under his watch, teams of talented designers and craftspeople translated Tiffany’s all-encompassing vision into some of the most memorable glass creations of our time. Tiffany’s studio system was not a simple enterprise; he needed specialized employees—a hierarchy of artists and artisans—to accomplish his goals. This exhibition, updated and reinstalled on September 4, 2012, addresses the processes that Tiffany’s many companies used to produce everything from glass mosaics and molded buttons to leaded-glass lamps and windows.