Exhibitions and tips for 2020

In 2020 the city of Vienna celebrates Ludwig van Beethoven’s 250th birthday. Beethoven was a revolutionary musician and this will be heard and seen all over Vienna in 2020. Musicians such as Beethoven, Mozart and Haydn were decisive for what Vienna is still today, the world capital of music.

Austellung von Gemälden in der Albertina inkl. BesucherInnen
Ausstellungsbereich © radub85 /

12 exhibition tips for the year 2020

1. Belvedere

From February 7th to May 17th, the Upper Belvedere in the exhibition “IM BLICK” is dedicated to one of the most important late medieval painters in Austria: the master of Mondsee. From May 29th to September 13th the Belvedere is dedicated to Elena Luksch-Makowsky. The artist’s works were found in all major Viennese art venues at the beginning of the 20th century.

2. Kunsthistorisches Museum

At the beginning of the year 2020, ie until 19 January 2020, the Kunsthistorisches Museum is still running the exhibition Caravaggio & Bernini – A Revolution in the Arts. Both the painter Caravaggio and the sculptor Gianlorenzo Bernini are among those Old Masters who enjoy great popularity to this day. About 60 main works of the two artists will be exhibited.

March 25 to July 3, 2020 – “Beethoven bewegt“. In cooperation with the Kunsthistorisches Museum Wien and the archive of the Gesellschaft der Musikfreunde in Vienna, there is an unusual homage to Ludwig van Beethoven. Beethoven’s universal and unique reception, the epochal meaning of his music, but also the perception of his icon-stylized person allow a multitude of starting points. The exhibition features paintings by Caspar David Friedrich, sketch books by William Turner, graphics by Francisco de Goya, Anselm Kiefer and Jorinde Voigt, sculptures by Auguste Rodin, Rebecca Horn and John Baldessari, a performative sculpture by Tino Sehgal, a video by Guido van der Werve u. v. m. in conversation with the music and the person of Beethoven. This creates a bridge to the present and masterpieces of fine art form connections with music and silence.

From October 2020 to January 2021, the exhibition “The First Renaissance in the North – Holbein, Burgkmair and the art in the age of the Fugger” starts. The content shows how the city of Augsburg, home of wealthy merchants such as the Fugger and favorite residence of Maximilian I, was influenced by the Renaissance of Italy at the beginning of the 16th century. The approximately 150 works by Hans Holbein, Hans Burgkmair and works by Dürer, Bellini and other German, Italian and Dutch artists from this period are on display.

3. Albertina

From 11 October 2019 to 12 January 2020, drawings from the Guerlain Collection will be exhibited at the Center Pompidou. As the first museum in Central Europe, the Albertina gives an insight into the collecting activity of the Guerlains.

From January 31, 2020 the Albertina will be dedicated to the artist Wilhelm Leibl. He is one of the most important representatives of realism in Europe. His works will be exhibited in Vienna until May 10, 2020.

From February 22 to May 24, around 120 works from the Hahnloser Collection will be exhibited under the title “Cézanne, Matisse, Hodler“. It is one of the most important private collections of French modernism. The Hahnloser Collection was created between 1905 and 1936 between the collector couple Arthur and Hedy Hahnloser-Bühler and their artist friends. The works on display come from artists such as Pierre Bonnard, Ferdinand Hodler, Henri Matisse, Félix Vallotton, and Cézanne, Renoir, Toulouse-Lautrec and Van Gogh are also part of the collection.

The exhibition “Modigliani – Picasso. Revolution of Primitivism” begins on September 18, 2020 and runs until January 10, 2021. On the occasion of the 100th anniversary of the day of death, this exhibition is all about the artist Amedeo Modigliani.

4. Literaturmuseum

Vienna – A City in the Mirror of Literature” is the title of the exhibition, which will be held from April 12, 2019 to February 16, 2020 in the Literature Museum of the Austrian National Library.

From April 3, 2020 to February 14, 2021, the topic will be “Utopias and Apocalypses. The Invention of the Future in Literature“. This exhibition focuses on the utopias and dark visions of the future, based on the machine worlds, doomsday scenarios and satirical idylls that are designed in literature. The focus is on selected texts and objects, especially from the holdings of the Austrian National Library. In addition to German-language texts by Ingeborg Bachmann, Otto Basil, Hans Flesch-Brunningen, Erich Fried, Marlen Haushofer, Christoph Ransmayr and Oswald Wiener, international utopian literature from the 16th century to the present day is also presented. The latter refers to Thomas Morus ’” Utopia “via Karel Čapek’s” War with the Newts “and George Orwell’s” 1984 “to the feminist science fiction novels by Ursula K. Le Guin.

5. MAK – Austrian Museum of Applied Arts

From December 18, 2019 to April 13, 2020, the MAK will focus on the works of the German carpenter Michael Thonet and exhibit his works in the MAK exhibition hall under the title BUGHOLZ, VIELSCHICHTIG Thonet and the modern furniture design. As part of the exhibition, the great role played by Thonet, which also played a key role in modern furniture design through the development of world-renowned bentwood furniture, was discussed. The best known and one of the best-selling pieces of furniture in the world is chair no. 14, which was produced in 1859.

The exhibition “OTTO PRUTSCHER – Allgestalter der Wiener Moderne” starts on 20 November 2019. His works will be exhibited until 17 May 2020 in the MAK Contemporary Art Collection. Prutscher was a design architect and designer or a member of all important reform art movements, from the Secession to the Wiener Werkstätte and the Werkbund.

6. Theatermuseum

Until 10th February 2020, the exhibition “Alles danzt – Kosmos Wiener Tanzmoderne” was on display in the Theater Museum.

7. Bank Austria Kunstforum Wien

The exhibition “Gerhard Richter” will be dedicated to the artist Gerhard Richter at the Bank Austria Kunstforum Wien from 14 October 2020 until 24 January 2021. Shown is an extensive retrospective of his landscapes. The exhibition will feature around 100 exhibits, ranging from photographs, prints to drawings.

8. Leopold Museum

In the period from November 15, 2019 to April 20, 2020, the Leopold Museum is dedicated to German Expressionism, displaying works from the Braglia and Johenning collections. On display are some 120 exhibits featuring works by Emil Nolde, Max Pechstein, Ernst Ludwig Kirchner, Erich Heckel, Wassily Kandinsky, Alexei Jawlensky, Marianne von Werefkin, August Macke and Franz Marc, as well as Paula Modersohn-Becker, Paul Klee and Lionel Feininger.

From May 30 to September 21, 2020, the Leopold Museum will dedicate itself to the composer Ludwig van Beethoven in the exhibition “Inspiration Beethoven – A Symphony in Images from Vienna 1900“.

9. mumok

Classic modernism from the mumok collection will be exhibited from 08th November 2019 to 13th April 2020.

10. Austrian National Library

From December 19, 2019 to April 19, 2020, the Austrian National Library is offering an exhibition entitled “Beethoven – Menschenwelt und Götterfunken” in the State Hall. As part of the exhibition, numerous original letters from the holdings of the Austrian National Library show that Beethoven was not just a “lonely fighter”, but a composer who was in contact with his teachers, students, musicians, women and friends in a variety of ways.

11. Haus der Musik 

From April 20 to September 20 there will be a cabinet exhibition in the courtyard in the Haus der Musik entitled “Hommage á Beethoven“. From June 10 to August 10, the “Inside Beethoven” project lets visitors experience what it feels like and feels like to be part of a music ensemble. All year round you can follow the musical traces of Ludwig van Beethoven in the Sound Museum.

12. Mozarthaus

As part of a special exhibition, the Mozarthaus focuses on the musicians of Viennese classical music under the title “The Triassic of Viennese Classic: Haydn – Mozart – Beethoven. Similarities – Parallels – Opposites“. Period: February 13, 2020 to January 31, 2021.