Published on March 2, 2013 | by Francy0
Top destinations 2012: Vienna celebrates Klimt
There we go with our 4th appointment with the “Top European destinations for 2012”. Ladies and Gentleman, welcome to: Vienna. The capital of Austria is a beautiful place, a fresh and lively city, always glorious with its superb concerts, museums, historic landmarks, shopping, and restaurants of all kinds. However, as we promised, this 2012 makes the city even more special. The reason is that Vienna is celebrating the 150th birthday of its own artist, Gustav Klimt.
Over these 150 years, Klimt – 1862-1918, one of the best known figures of the Jugendstil art period – has become a phenomenon not only in art theory, but also in contemporary history.
On the occasion of this Klimt 2012 year-long event, the whole city is getting ready to commemorate and pay homage to this great artist, and the greatest Viennese museums are embarking on a celebration of Gustav Klimt’s milestone birthday with no less than nine exhibitions, each focusing on relatively unknown aspects of the artist’s life and work.
The MAK will present “Gustav Klimt: Expectation and Fulfillment” (March 21-July 15) an exhibition dedicated to Klimt’s enormous mosaic, created in 1911 for the dining room of the Palais Stoclet in Brussels.
The Kunsthistorisches Museum, instead, has erected a temporary 12-meter-high walkway that will allow visitors to get closer to the mural-like paintings that Klimt created for the cultural palaces along Vienna’s Ringstrasse – until May 6. “Gustav Klimt in the Kunsthistorisches Museum” will also use drawings and paintings on loan from Germany and Austria to document Klimt’s “Ringstrasse” period.
However, without a doubt, the signature exhibition of the Klimt Year will take place at Vienna’s Belvedere Palace. The Belvedere is a historic complex in Vienna consisting of two Baroque palaces: the Upper and Lower Belvedere.
Home to the world’s largest collection of Klimt oil paintings, the Upper Belvedere will showcase the entire Klimt holdings in “Masterpieces in Focus: 150 Years of Klimt”, an exhibition that will take place from July 12 to January 6, 2013. Useless to say, it is here that you will find “The Kiss” – his most famous painting – on permanent display.
Through March 4, instead, you will enjoy a separate exposition at the Lower Belvedere, which traces the artist’s collaboration with architect Josef Hoffmann. The two artists/friends shared a common vision of an art that was meant to touch all spheres of life. This “Gustav Klimt/Josef Hoffmann” show, illustrates the genesis and spatial impact of their joint projects.
The Austrian Museum of Applied Art / Contemporary Art will dedicate a retrospective to a sketch of the mosaic, made by Klimt, for the dining room of the Stoclet Palace in Brussels – 21 March to 15 July. Moreover, in a historical and biographical perspective, the Künstlerhaus will reveal the existing links between Klimt and the institution, by presenting the exhibition “Gustav Klimt and the Künstlerhaus”, from July 6 to September 2.
The Wien Museum, will present “Klimt. The Wien Museum Collection”, to be held from 16 May to 16 September. The museum is also organizing a Worst of Klimt facebook campaign, which invites people to post on its Facebook page “the most horrible or most absurd Klimt products.” The posters of the 10 objects causing “the most controversy, discussion or approval under the Facebook community” will be rewarded with a guided tour through the exhibition!
Further exhibits and initiatives are planned in other museums, including the Albertina – which will focus on Klimt’s drawings, from March 14 to June 10; the Leopold Museum, presenting “Klimt: Up Close and Personal”, which explores the artist’s private life through his postcards, pictures and letters.
In addition to the museum exhibits, Klimt’s last workshop in Vienna has been restored and will open to the public in mid-2012, while at the many shops, flea markets and Vienna’s excellent museum shops, you can purchase beautiful items, from jewelry to textiles, or lamps with designs from the Klimt period.
Well then, whenever you travel to Vienna through the year, you will be able to enjoy a Klimt event or exhibition. The anniversary project dedicated to this great Viennese artist seems promising an amazing Klimt journey across the capital, a celebration that may serve as a cultural pilgrimage, transforming Vienna into a place of worship, in the space of a whole year.
You just cannot miss it out, you have about 300 days left!
Photo by deflam