Gain insight into Vienna’s rich art history on this 3-hour walking tour. Discover the pivotal role Vienna played in shaping modern art and trace the history of the Vienna Secession, a group of 20th-century rebel artists who established a new movement at odds with Austria’s imperial past. Walk around the first district (Innere Stadt) to admire Art Nouveau architecture and design, explore the Museum of Applied and Decorative Arts and visit the Secession Building to see master artworks like the ‘Beethoven Frieze.’ Numbers limited to six, ensuring a small-group experience.
Meet your guide near the Stubentor metro station in the late morning to begin your 3-hour walking tour. Walking along the edge of Vienna’s first district, the Innere Stadt, your art scholar guide will introduce you to the Vienna Secession, a transformative artistic movement that laid the groundwork for Modernism, Art Deco, Art Nouveau and other dramatic innovations of the 20th century.In the late 1800s, a group of visionary artists including Gustav Klimt, Otto Wagner and Rudolf von Alt cultivated a new aesthetic that broke with the ideals of imperial Austria. It celebrated technology, progress, freedom, expression and youth — a far cry from classicism. See the Vienna Secession's hallmark styles and designs reflected in the buildings, landmarks and structures around the city, such as the Vienna post office and various subway entrances; you’ll also take a ride on the subway, itself a product of this period, reflective of the movement's new emphasis on technology and functionalism.Step inside the Museum of Applied and Decorative Arts to see a great collection of early 20th-century furniture, designs, paintings and illustrations, including pieces by Klimt that showcase his fervor for dismantling the classical approach in favor of fresher styles. If time permits, visit the Secession Building, an exhibition hall built in 1897 as an architectural manifesto for the movement. Here you’ll see Klimt’s Beethoven Frieze, one of the most widely recognized artworks of Secession style.Arriving back at the tour’s start point, you’ll leave this 3-hour Vienna art tour with a stronger understanding of the city's pivotal role in early modernism, and how the Vienna Secession influenced other notable movements such as Impressionism.