Fireworks of museum openings
The former summer residence of Prince Eugene on Rennweg, Vienna, is an imposing part of the Baroque palace complex of the Belvedere, and opens its magnificent gates to museum visitors again following a general refurbishment. The building and its wonderful staterooms were completed in 1716 and have been brought up to date with international museum standards. The addition of a café as well as the renovation and improvement of accessibility and technology ensure a museum experience of the very highest quality. The Lower Belvedere was reopened at the end of January 2022.
Heidi Horten Collection
A new museum hotspot for Vienna: A completely new museum, which houses one of Europe's very best private collections, the Heidi Horten Collection, was created in the heart of the city between 2020 and 2022. Art patron Heidi Goëss-Horten (1941-2022), one of only a handful of female museum founders in the world, spent the past 30 years putting together an impressive cross-section of art history from Classical Modernism to the present day.
The masterpieces – including works by Gustav Klimt, Egon Schiele, Pablo Picasso, Andy Warhol, Marc Chagall and Gerhard Richter – deserve a special home. Extensive work was required to convert the Stöckl building – a venerable Palais in the old town, nestled between the Vienna State Opera, Albertina and Burggarten. The interior of the building has been completely gutted; the facade painstakingly restored and greened. In future, there will be 1,500m² of exhibition space spread across three levels, with prominence also given to contemporary art. Opening is on June 3, 2022.
Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart died in the heart of Vienna, not far from St. Stephen's Cathedral, in 1791. A new and unique attraction opened here on September 16, 2022: On an area of 1,500 square meters, Mythos Mozart offers the world's first multimedia encounter with the musical genius – an invitation to dive into his world with all the senses. The combination of music, performing art, architecture, and technology as well as the lavish spatial and media staging make Mythos Mozart an unforgettable experience. – Not only for those who already love Mozart.
Following a general refurbishment, the Josephinum, which houses the collections of the Medical University of Vienna, celebrates its reopening at the end of September 2022. The heritage listed building from the 18th century underwent remodeling and expansion into a medical history museum for almost four years. It offers around 1,000 m² of exhibition space. Above all, the original condition of the jewel of Classicism was restored. For example, the heart of the Josephinum – a historic, nine meter-high auditorium – was rebuilt. The forecourt and entrance area were also redesigned. The Josephinum has a collection of medical history that is unique anywhere in Europe. Numerous objects will be shown in the Josephinum for the first time after it reopens.
Margarete Schütte-Lihotzky Center
A real Viennese pioneer is honored with an apartment museum: Architect Margarete Schütte-Lihotzky. She is remembered forever as a pioneer of social housing, an advocate of the women's and peace movement, and a resistance fighter against National Socialism. She never wanted to be reduced to having invented the fitted kitchen, known as the Frankfurt kitchen. Her last home on Franzensgasse, which Schütte-Lihotzky lived in for three decades up until her death in 2000, is being refurbished and reconstructed. The heritage-listed apartment has been open to visitors twice a week (Tuesdays and Fridays) since October 2022.
House of Strauss
A new music hotspot is scheduled to open its doors in Vienna in 2023: The "House of Strauss" in Casino Zögernitz. Opened by Johann Strauss Senior in 1837, the casino was a meeting place of Viennese society for many years. From 1880, the brothers Johann and Eduard Strauss gave numerous concerts in the Strauss Room. The Viennese art of living should become something to experience here – including entertaining music, fine dining in the Brasserie Casino Zögernitz, and an interactive exhibition that brings every aspect of the Strauss dynasty to life. True to the motto: Celebrate the moment.
In the Stubenviertel in the city center, a new public (cultural) space is being created that will give Vienna another cosmopolitan hotspot. The Alte Post, a huge complex of buildings that served as the headquarters of the Austrian post office from 1850 to 2011, is being extensively renovated for future mixed use – with apartments, stores, restaurants, offices, coworking spaces, and cultural offerings. Artist and perception researcher sha is responsible for the artistic design. A multidimensional media artwork including an immersive 360-degree experience for all the senses is being created in the new contemporary museum. It should be accessible from summer/autumn 2022 – free of charge and around the clock.
Wien Museum Karlsplatz
It has been around for quite a few years already and will shine in a totally new light following necessary expansion and remodeling: The Wien Museum on Karlsplatz, which has been documenting the city's history from the Neolithic Age to the present day since 1959. Work is currently in full swing. On twice as much usable area as before, the modern museum building will offer lots of space for the expanded permanent exhibition, as well as for events and transfer programs. Visitors can look forward to a huge (freely accessible) terrace with a view over Karlsplatz. Planned reopening: end of 2023.
A real modernist masterpiece that has been home to generations of residents and once even hosted the headquarters of the British secret services: Villa Beer, a private residence built by Josef Frank and Oskar Wlach during the interwar period. Now, the four-story architectural gem in Hietzing is being converted into a museum house and opened up to the public by new owner Lothar Trierenberg. At present, the focus is on fine-tuning the concept including renovation work. Scheduled opening: 2024.
Text: Maria Schaller