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Vienna's Turn-Of-The-Century Golden Age

In 2018, Vienna is celebrating the anniversary of its fin-de-siècle period. Klimt, Schiele, and co. are on display at museums around the city.

Around the year 1900, Vienna emerged as one of the major intellectual and artistic hubs in Europe. Art Nouveau, the advent of psychoanalysis, and a society that turned its gaze inward, away from the Monarchy, paved the way for the era of Viennese Modernism. This eclectic period in Vienna’s history grew from an artistic and philosophical movement to a way of life in the city. Egon Schiele, Gustav Klimt, Koloman Moser, and Otto Wagner are four artists that famously proliferated Viennese Modernism in their work, which was daring, provocative, and always captivating. 

2018 marks a bittersweet anniversary for Viennese Modernism: 100 years ago, Schiele, most famous for his hauntingly contorted nudes, Klimt, painter of “The Kiss,”, Moser, co-founder of the Wiener Werkstätte design collective, and Wagner, Vienna’s foremost Art Nouveau architect, all passed away. To celebrate their fiercely innovative work, the city is hosting special exhibits across many of its museums. Once again, Vienna's coffee houses, art galleries, and salons are abuzz with the names of modernists, who still intrigue and challenge their audience today.

Special Exhibits

  • Klimt collection at the Leopold Museum © Peter Rigaud Klimt collection at the Leopold Museum © Peter Rigaud
Dec 19, 2018-Apr 22, 2019: Koloman Moser/MAK

The Wiener Werkstätte archives, built up by the community of the same name established by Koloman Moser, Josef Hoffmann and Fritz Waerndorfer in 1903, are now owned by the MAK. The aim of this internationally respected group was to bring art into all areas of human existence. This exhibition highlights Moser’s extensive output.

MAK – Austrian Museum of Applied Arts/Contemporary Art, Stubenring 5, 1010 Vienna,

Year round: Klimt Villa | Gustav Klimt’s Studio

The ground floor of the Villa used by Klimt as a studio between 1911 and 1918 features a reconstruction of the original furnishings and various media related to Klimt’s work. In all, around 50 oil paintings and hundreds of sketches were created here. 

Klimt Villa | Gustav Klimt’s Studio, Feldmühlgasse 11, 1130 Vienna,

For a list of all special exhibitions, click here.

Special Tours

  • Art Nouveau Facade © Wien Tourismus / Christian Stemper Art Nouveau Facade © Wien Tourismus / Christian Stemper
  • Secession building © Wien Tourismus / Christian Stemper Secession building © Wien Tourismus / Christian Stemper
  • Ernst Fuchs Museum © Österreich Werbung / Roxana Farca Ernst Fuchs Museum © Österreich Werbung / Roxana Farca
  • Postsparkasse © Postsparkasse / Walter Zednicek Postsparkasse © Postsparkasse / Walter Zednicek

Otto Wagner Church

Otto Wagner designed the Weisse Stadt (White City) project in Vienna’s 14th district. The development comprised a hospital, Art Nouveau theater and the Church of St. Leopold.

Guided tours in 2018:

Otto Wagner’s White City (available in English by prior arrangement)

Otto Wagner Church of St. Leopold (available in English by prior arrangement)

Otto Wagner sanatorium, Baumgartner Höhe 1, 1140 Vienna, contact:

Sigmund Freud Museum

The tour takes in the places where Freud saw patients, met friends and compared notes with fellow professionals: mansion houses and coffeehouses on the Ringstrasse boulevard, the University of Vienna and the former site of Vienna General Hospital.

Price includes: admission to the Sigmund Freud Museum

Tours can be booked individually: (contact:

Sigmund Freud Museum, Berggasse 19, 1090 Vienna,

Addiditonal Tours:

Marieta Teich: The tour begins with Gustav Klimt’s Beethoven Frieze in the Secession, and ends in the grounds of the old general hospital (duration: 3hrs).

Katharina Ebner: Special tours in 2018: Otto Wagner – Anniversary Tour: the Man Who Made Vienna Modern; The Straight and Sweeping Line: Viennese Art and Design from 1900 to the Present Day; New Vienna: The Birth of Modernism 

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