Updated: Jun 5
Join us for a visit to one of the most fascinating museums in Vienna. The Kunsthaus Wien is a unique museum - the only in the world - sporting permanently Hundertwasser’s works. A private business attracting close to 200,000 visitors annually, it is not supported by any public entities in Austria.
The Kunsthaus came to be as a result of the renovation - in authentic Hunderwasser style - of the Thone furniture factory (that had created the iconic bistro chair!). Opened in April 1991, the museum exhibits works over 4,000 square meters. The permanent Hundertwasser collection is in the first and second floors and temporary international ones in the third and fourth floors. The artist’s credo “Art must show its true colours again. Art must address the people again (…) Art must embrace nature and her laws and man and his striving for true and lasting values”, was placed inside the stump of a pillar.
In full Hundertwasser style, there are wavy, undulating floors and a notable lack of straight lines and all that in bright colours. There is a fountain in the foyer, and a restaurant with abundant plant life making it look like a winter garden. An unevenly winding staircase leads to the main part of the exhibition on the upper floors. To keep the rooms flooded with daylight, Hundertwasser put a glass frontage in front of the facade.
The museum is decorated with enamelled, checkerboard mosaics on the facade, with their size being likewise definitely not accidental. The mosaics cover only parts of the surface which actually makes the facade a picture.
Friedensreich Hundertwasser was one of the most important Austrian artists of the twentieth century. His museum unites the most important aspects of his art with the world’s largest collection of his paintings, printed graphics, tapestries and architectural designs. Vienna’s first “green museum”, it also allows us to experience Hundertwasser’s visionary ecological commitment. Over and above this, the Kunsthaus Wien is Vienna’s premier house for photography exhibitions.
Hundertwasser used the apartment on the top floor as his home and atelier. The Kunsthaus is also home to two bee colonies that live on the museum's roof garden and produce organic honey.
There is an interesting museum shop where you will find exquisite souvenirs, art prints and Hundertwasser gifts together with a range of publications and catalogues. The museum café is clear Hundertwasser, too: black and white cubes, colourful playfulness and lush greenery. There is a free cloakroom for visitors.
The museum is barrier free with access via the ground-level side entrance. Ring the bell and the museum team will help you in. There is a lift to all floors and both the shop and the café are fully accessible allthough, mind you that due to the architecture, the floors are uneven!.
The accessible loos are on the ground floor.
If interested in the architecture, check also the Hundertwasserhaus, a municipal apartment block by Hundertwasser completed in 1986 less than a kilometre away in Kegelgasse 37-39.
Untere Weißgerberstraße 13, 1030 Wien