Vienna’s exhibitions often feature the very best of art history. The Bank Austria Kunstforum Wien extends the tradition to include the very best of contemporary art with the Gerhard Richter: Landscape exhibition.
- First time Richter’s landscapes have been dealt with so comprehensively in an exhibition
- Also the most significant Richter exhibition ever held in Austria
- Runs Oct 1, 2020 – Mar 7, 2021
- See also: Kunstforum Wien visitor & tickets info
Gerhard Richter: Landscape
Gerhard Richter has long escaped the borders of Germany to become a giant of contemporary art and perhaps the world’s most important living painter.
A look at the list of highest prices achieved for works by living artists reveals just how much recognition he enjoys: only Koons and Hockney come higher on the ranking. Not that Richter seems to allow himself to rest on his laurels; this modest quote of his from 2002 seems apposite:
By nature I am a skeptic. I don’t dare to think my paintings are great. I can’t understand the arrogance of someone saying, ‘I have created a big, important work.’
Given the artist’s status, it’s perhaps a little surprising that he hasn’t featured more often in Vienna’s art museums. A recent exception, of course, was the Warhol to Richter exhibition at the Albertina, which featured, for example, his mind-blowing Woman Drinking (at least it had that effect on me).
The 2020/2021 Landscape exhibition at the Bank Austria Kunstforum Wien redresses the balance by offering the most comprehensive Richter exhibition ever put on in Austria. This is also the first time that such a detailed eye has been cast over this particular aspect of his work. The artist himself helped with the organisation, while the exhibition per se also involves cooperation with the Kunsthaus Zürich.
The 150 or so works on display cover oil paintings, photographs and other artistic media in a grand look at a theme and genre that has accompanied Richter across his artistic journey.
The resulting retrospective also presents a window into Richter’s spectrum of styles and approaches: from almost photographic paintings through to abstract works, fictional constructs, and overpaintings. As a special treat, the exhibition includes items rarely or never seen before in public.
Dates and tickets
Immerse yourself in Richter’s landscapes from October 1st, 2020 to March 7th, 2021. A standard adult ticket for the Kunstforum Wien and the exhibition costs €11 at the time of writing. A Vienna Pass (review) gets you in once for free.
How to get to the Richter exhibition
Check the main Kunstforum Wien article for travel tips. The exhibition venue sits in an easy-to-find location, not far from the pedestrianised central areas and on the edge of the historical centre of town. For example, the building looks across the Freyung square to the Schottenstift monastery, which dates back to the 1100s.
Look out for the ancillary small exhibitions in the tresor space of the Kunstforum while there: Pablo Chiereghin (October 15th to November 22nd) and Herta Müller (December 9th to March 3rd).
Address: Freyung 8, 1010 Vienna