In Vienna I didn’t enter many places, but I did get to go into the Albertina, which is a palace/art museum housing a lot of modern art (not really contemporary).

This is the entrance to the museum at the Albertina in Vienna.

I really enjoyed the entrance, pictured at left. The picture doesn’t do it justice, but the stairs and the great chandelier at the top were slightly overwhelming. Before the stairs, there is a corridor with mirrors on either side and sculptures of monkeys doing different activities, such as reading a book, painting, playing with a toy train, and more. It was quite strange and did not really seem to fit with the elegant architecture and mirrors.

At the time I went to the museum, I was lucky enough to see a great photography exhibit of Heinrich Kühn, a German photographer and scientist that lived from 1866-1944 and was a major supporter of photography as art. He participated in the pictorialist movement, which used soft focus (blurry) and domestic imagery, as well as images of nature and still life. It was inspired by painting and the idea was to try to make the images appear like paintings.

One of the rooms decorated for the era.

The exposition was separated into sections that had different thematic ties, as well as being relatively chronological. A large focus of his work, as well as pictorialism, was images of his family, particularly his children. The family also had a nanny, and Kühn would photographer her as well. There was also a section of the exposition that had a wall of projected slides of images Kühn never printed. Overall I really enjoyed the exhibition. I always find it really interesting to see old photographs by photographers I’ve learned about in history or to learn of photographers I don’t know about.

The museum also showcased impressionist works and had a section that showed the decor of the palace as it would have been. Better than describe that, see the photo to the right.

Leave a Reply