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Klimt's "Lady with Fan" returns to Vienna

It was the last picture that Gustav Klimt (1862-1918) worked on in his studio in Vienna-Hietzing in 1917. Apart from a few details, the co-founder of the Vienna Secession was able to complete Lady with Fan before his death. It shows one of Klimt's favorite subjects – a "beautiful Viennese woman". However, not some society lady – a frequent motif in Klimt's work – but a supposedly unknown dancer, looking confidently into the distance and holding a fan in front of her upper body. In any case, this is "unadorned Klimt": because the work was never covered with the special protective layer, the varnish, usually found on oil paintings.

Rare visit to Vienna

The painting, which has now returned to Vienna for a while for a special exhibition at the Belvedere, has a moving journey behind it. To date, the Lady with Fan was accessible to the Viennese public just one single time: in 1920, in an exhibition in today's MAK – Museum of Applied Arts, Vienna. In the meantime, the painting was in the possession of art collector Rudolf Leopold (founder of the Leopold Museum). It was exhibited in the 1980s and 1990s in Tokyo and Krakow, before it was auctioned off in New York in 1994. In the 1980s and 1990s, it was exhibited in Tokyo and Krakow, before it was auctioned off in New York in 1994. It was never explained whether its removal from Austria was even legal. In order to bring it to Vienna, the Republic of Austria granted the anonymous foreign owner immunity from prosecution.

Two-part special exhibition

The first part of this special exhibition focused on many of Klimt's late works. These included Lady with Fan, The Bride, Portrait of Amalie Zuckerkandl, Adam and Eve and Portrait of a Lady in White. In October 2021, a second aspect was added to the exhibition: Klimt's affinity with East Asian art styles. These exerted a fascination on him from as early as the 1890s. Chinese and Japanese art in particular also left their mark on Lady with Fan. That is evident from numerous elements: From the Chinese robe worn by the subject to the characteristic motifs on the yellow wallpaper, like the Chinese phoenix, a crane, a golden pheasant, and a lotus flower. These are motifs that are everywhere to be found in East Asian art.

Lady with Fan. Gustav Klimt and East-Asia

March 25, 2021 – February 13, 2022

Upper Belvedere (Oberes Belvedere)

Prinz-Eugen-Straße 27
1030 Vienna
  • Comments

    • Please note: Groups of 10 or more people, you must make an appointment for a tour with the Upper Belvedere in advance. There is no charge for this. You can contact the reservation team at the Belvedere by email or telephone.
      Monday to Sunday, 9.00 am - 5.00 pm
      Telephone: +43 1 795 57-333

  • Vienna City Card

    • Your benefit with the Vienna City Card: -9%

      Additional information on the offer: Standard ticket price: 16€ Klimt ticket (Upper and Lower Belvedere): 21,5€ instead of 24€

  • Opening times

    • Mo, 10:00 - 18:00
    • Tu, 10:00 - 18:00
    • We, 10:00 - 18:00
    • Th, 10:00 - 18:00
    • Fr, 10:00 - 18:00
    • Sa, 10:00 - 18:00
    • Su, 10:00 - 18:00
  • Accessibility

    • Main entrance
      • no steps (Schwingtüre 102 cm wide)
    • Car parks Main entrance
      • Parking spaces for people with disabilities
        Parking space for visitors with disabilities in front of the entrance at Prinz-Eugen-Strasse 27, Parking: 10 am – 6 pm
    • Elevator available
      • Door 150 cm wide
    • Further information
      • Seeing eye dogs allowed
      • Wheelchair accessible restroom available.
    • Special offers for people with disabilities

      Reduced admission for persons with special needs and their escorts (3 Euro each). "Seeing differently" tours (tactile tours) in the Upper Belvedere: The tours with picture descriptions and tactile support are particularly suitable for blind and visually impaired visitors.
 Multimedia guides with videos in Austrian Sign Language (OGS) are available to deaf and hearing impaired visitors. Over 30 videos provide information on selected works of the collection in the Upper Belvedere and on the palace and garden complex as well as the history of the Belvedere.

    • Comments

      2 elevators reachable via a ramp (staff will provide assistance), wheelchairs available at the cloakroom.
      Shop/café: a few steps (staff will provide assistance).

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