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 with a real treat: A special exhibition explaining Sigmund Freud's influence on Salvador Dalí.
Heidi Horten Collection
This new addition to the Vienna museumscape has been very eagerly awaited, and rightly so. An all-new museum, taking shape in the heart of Vienna, will provide a fitting home for the Heidi Horten Collection, one of Europe’s leading private collections. For the past 30 years, patron of the arts Heidi Goëss-Horten, one of just a handful of female museum founders worldwide, has been bringing together an impressive crosssection of art history from early 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.
Margarete Schütte-Lihotzky Center
A real Viennese pioneer is honored in a 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. From summer 2022, the heritage listed apartment should be open to visitors on one day a week and presented in cooperation with the Austrian Architecture Museum (Az W).
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.
House of Strauss
A new music hotspot is scheduled to open its doors in Vienna in autumn 2022: 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.
Following a general refurbishment, the Josephinum, which houses the collections of the Medical University of Vienna, will also reopen in autumn 2022 in the 9th district. The heritage listed building from the 18th century has been undergoing remodeling and expansion into a medical history museum since 2019. Above all, the original condition of the jewel of Classicism is to be restored. For example, the heart of the Josephinum – a historic, nine meter-high auditorium – will be restored. The forecourt and entrance area will also be redesigned. The Josephinum has a collection of medical history that is unique anywhere in Europe. Several permanent exhibitions are planned for the future.
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