Vienna is full of art museums, but also private galleries. And the Art Vienna fair brings the latter together to present a selection of contemporary art to an international audience.
- International modern art fair inside the Hofburg palace
- Next dates: TBA
- See also: Vienna events | Leopold Museum | MAK museum
What’s Art Vienna?
The clue is in the title. Whereby we’re not talking court portraits from the 17th century. Think Dalí, rather than Dürer.
2019 was the second Art Vienna fair, the first having attracted over 15,000 visitors back in 2017. Various galleries come together to present works from across the contemporary art, modernism, and design spectrum. The featured artists include both established global names, local favourites, and upcoming talent.
The 2019 event took place in the Hofburg, the former seat of the Habsburgs – a family and location with a rich artistic tradition of their own; the monarchs as collectors, the palace as a gallery for the contemporary art of its time.
The Hofburg now serves various functions, one of which is to combine Imperial elegance with modern facilities in the form of a congress centre.
Dates & tickets
I don’t yet have dates for the next art fair. Soon as I get any information, I’ll post it here. In 2019, the event ran from Friday, March 15th to Sunday, March 17th, 11 am to 7 pm; a day ticket cost €13 for adults, with kids and students (under 27) free.
In the absence of details of any future fair, here a reminder of what happened at Art Vienna 2019, where some 28 galleries exhibited such works as:
- Water Lilies with Willows by Roy Lichtenstein, the pop art genius whose Masterpiece sold for $165 million in 2017
- Jean-Michel Basquiat’s Flexible
- Works by Gottfried Helnwein, Jean Mirós, Josef Mikl and Arnulf Rainer (who gets his own exhibition at Vienna’s Albertina later in the year in celebration of his 90th birthday)
According to the organisers, works by Andy Warhol, Banksy and many other sold at the fair.
The fair also included a special Hofburg under the Carpet art exhibition.
Participating artists each took a specific carpet from the Hofburg as a starting point for developing unique artwork that examines issues around power structures. It’s a theme with some resonance, given the palace was the centre of political power in the Austrian Empire for hundreds of year.
How to get to the Hofburg
As the former residence of the Emperor, it’s no surprise to find the Hofburg congress centre in the old town and within walking distance of many of Vienna’s main tourist locations (in fact, the Hofburg is a main tourist location).
Subway: The Hofburg sits at the centre of a circle formed by five subway stations, all of which are a few minutes walk away: Karlsplatz (U1, U2, U4 lines), Stephansplatz (U1, U3), Herrengasse (U3), Museumsquartier (U2), Volkstheater (U2, U3)
Tram/bus: You want the Burgring station, which stops almost outside the building. Take the tram lines that run along the Ringstrassen (1, 2, D and 71)
If you’re in the Hofburg area and interested in art and design, pop into the Weltmuseum across the square as well. This is a museum of people and cultures, featuring artifacts from across the world and through history.
And the Museumsquartier is not far away, home to three modern art museums (including the Leopold Museum, host of the first Art Vienna).
Address: Kongresszentrum Hofburg Vienna, Heldenplatz, 1010 Vienna | Website