See Gustav Klimt Paintings and Art in Vienna in Special 2012 Exhibitions

Special 150-year memorial exhibitions of paintings, drawings, and other works by the Austrian painter Gustav Klimt will entice art lovers to Vienna (Wien), Austria in 2012.

Gustav Klimt Paintings in the Belvedere in Vienna, Austria
© Belvedere, Vienna / Foto: Ian Ehm

Viennese art galleries and museums will celebrate the 150-year anniversary of the birth of the Austrian painter Gustav Klimt (1862-1918) with special temporary exhibitions. The Belvedere, home of the largest collection of Gustav Klimt oil paintings including “The Kiss”, will have two special exhibitions in addition to its permanent displays of Klimt and other Vienna Secession artists works. The Kunsthistorisches Museum, the Austrian Theater Museum, the Leopold Museum, and the Albertina will also have special Klimt 150 exhibitions during 2012. Advance purchase, skip-the-line tickets are available for most museums in Vienna via Tiqets.

See Klimt Paintings in the Belvedere Museum in Vienna, Austria

Gustav Klimt's The Kiss / Der Kuss in the Belvedere in Vienna, Austria
© Belvedere, Wien

Schloss Belvedere in Vienna has the largest collection of oil paintings by the Austrian artist Gustav Klimt. The most famous Klimt work here is “The Kiss”, which is permanently displayed in the Upper Belvedere Palace (Oberes Belvedere), a masterpiece of Baroque design in its own right.

The Belvedere Galerie (Gallery) has a wealth of Art Nouveau (Jugendstil) and Vienna Secession paintings on display in the permanent collection.

However, during 2012, the Ă–sterreichische Galerie Belvedere (Austrian Belvedere Gallery) will present two Klimt 150 special exhibitions:

  • Klimt & Hofmann Works in the Pioneers of the Modern Exhibition in the Belvedere
    Foto © Manfred Seidl / Belvedere, Wien

    The Pioneers of the Modern (Pioniere der Moderne) runs from October 10, 2011 to March 4, 2012 and features works on the collaboration between the painter Gustav Klimt and the architect Josef Hoffmann (Wiener Werkstätte). The exhibition will be in the Lower Belvedere (Unteres Belvedere).

  • The 150 Years Gustav Klimt (150 Jahre Gustav Klimt) will run from June 15, 2012 to January 6, 2013 in the Upper Belvedere. Details are still scarce but it will almost certainly be the best and biggest Klimt exhibition in Vienna.

See Gustav Klimt Art in the Kunsthistorisches Museum in Vienna

Roman and Greek Designs by Gustav Klimt in the Kunsthistorisches Museum, Vienna
© Kunsthistorisches Museum Wien
Klimt's Old Italy Designs for the Kunsthistorisches Museum Wien
© Kunsthistorisches Museum Wien

The Kunsthistorisches Museum (Museum of Art History) in Vienna is one of the world’s greatest collections of fine arts. The museum has a rather special relation to Gustav Klimt as he painted 13 paintings for the ceremonial staircase in the museum.

The Gustav Klimt at the Kunsthistorisches Museum exhibition will be from February 14 to May 6, 2012. The emphasis of the exhibition is the middle period of Gustav Klimt’s artistic career (1886-1897) with the focus on the 13 paintings and Klimt’s preparatory drawings.

Klimt’s Nuda Veritas in the Austrian Theater Museum in Vienna

Gustav Klimt’s early, more conservative works drew much praise from the Austrian establishment but some of his later works were highly controversial and severely criticized. Hermann Bahr, a supporter of Klimt and the Secessionists, published “Gegen Klimt” (Against Klimt), a collection of the vilifications of Klimt to show how ridiculous the claims were.  Bahr later donated Klimt’s “Nuda Veritas” (Naked Truth) to the Ă–sterreichisches Theatermuseum (Austrian Theatre Museum).

The Against Klimt – the Nuda Veritas and Her Defender Hermann Bahr (Gegen Klimt – Die „Nuda Veritas“ und ihr Verteidiger Hermann Bahr) will feature in the Austrian Theatre Museum in Vienna from May 10 to October 29, 2012. The focus of the exhibition is “Nuda Veritas” and the controversy the painting and the secessionist stirred at the end of the nineteenth century.

Gustav Klimt and Egon Schieles in the Leopold Museum in Vienna

Gustav Klimt's Death and Life in the Leopold Museum in Vienna, Austria
© Leopold Museum, Wien

The Leopold Museum in the Museumsquartier in Vienna has a large collection of works by the Viennese Succession movement, the Austrian Art Nouveau (Jugendstil) and expressionists.

The Gustav Klimt. (Time) Travel (Gustav Klimt. Eine (Zeit) Reise) will be on display in the Leopold Museum from February 24 to June 11, 2012. The special exhibition will not only place Klimt’s works next to paintings from his contemporaries, including Egon Schieles, but also include a large selection of items from the estate of Emilie Flöge, Klimt’s lifelong companion. The collection includes many sketches from his travels and rare writings.

See Gustav Klimt Drawings in the Albertina in Vienna

Gustav Klimt Drawing in the Albertina in Vienna, Austria
© Albertina, Wien

The Albertina in Vienna is an important research center for Klimt’s drawings and sketches. He particularly enjoyed sketching women. The Klimt – Drawings (Klimt – Zeichnungen) will be in the Albertina in Vienna from March 14 to June 10, 2012. The museum will exhibit the majority of its 170 Klimt drawings together with loan items to show Klimt’s mastery as sketch artist.

Gustav Klimt generally shunned cafĂ© society but there is of course no reason for the modern art lover to do the same. Virtually all Austrian museums and galleries have very pleasant cafĂ©s to compliment the traditional coffee houses of central Vienna.  Advance purchase, skip-the-line tickets are available for most museums in Vienna via Tiqets.

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About the author:

Henk Bekker

Henk Bekker is a freelance travel writer with over 20 years of experience writing online. He is particularly interested in history, art, and culture. He has lived most of his adult life in Germany, Switzerland, and Denmark. In addition to, he also owns a travel website on the Lake Geneva region of Switzerland and maintains statistical websites on car sales and classic car auction prices. Henk holds an MBA from Edinburgh Business School and an MSc in Development Finance from the University of London.

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