Akademie der Bildenden Künste
The Akademie der Bildenden Künste is an often underrated art space. Its gallery concentrates on the classic Flemish, Dutch and German...
Vienna’s famous market and eating strip began life as a farmers market in the 18th century, when the fruit market on Freyung was moved...
Kunsthalle Project Space
Once the Kunsthalle had taken up its new residence in the MuseumsQuartier, this glass cube was built on the site. Its doors were thrown...
Theater an der Wien
The Theater an der Wien has hosted some monumental premiere performances, such as Beethoven’s Fidelo, Mozart’s Die Zauberflöte and...
Piccini Piccolo Gourmet
‘Gourmet’ in the true sense of the word, Piccini has the finest antipasti restaurant in town, with a huge assortment of antipasti rolls,...
01, Friedrichstrasse 12 · interesting places nearby
In 1897, 19 progressive artists swam away from the mainstream Künstlerhaus artistic establishment to form the Vienna Secession (Sezession ). Among their number were Klimt, Josef Hoffman, Kolo Moser and Joseph M Olbrich.Olbrich designed the new exhibition centre of the Secessionists, which combined sparse functionality with stylistic motifs. Its biggest draw is Klimt's exquisitely gilded Beethoven Frieze .
The 14th exhibition (1902) held in the building featured the famous Beethoven Frieze , by Klimt. This 34m-long work was intended as a temporary display, little more than an elaborate poster for the main exhibit, Max Klinger’s Beethoven monument. Since 1983 it has been on display in the basement. Multilingual brochures explain the various graphic elements, which are based on Richard Wagner’s interpretation of Beethoven’s ninth symphony. The small room you enter before viewing the frieze tells the story of the building. It served as a hospital during WWI and was torched by the retreating Germans during WWII (the gold dome survived the fire). The ground floor is still used as it was originally intended: presenting temporary exhibitions of contemporary art.
The building is certainly a move away from the Ringstrasse architectural throwbacks. Its most striking feature is a delicate golden dome rising from a turret on the roof that deserves better than the description ‘golden cabbage’ accorded it by some Viennese. Other features are the Medusalike faces above the door with dangling serpents instead of earlobes, minimalist stone owls gazing down from the walls and vast ceramic pots supported by tortoises at the front.