In 2017 the triangular special exhibition room houses the next chapter in the "Old Friends" series, which showcases artists with whom Herbert Liaunig has enjoyed friendly ties ever since the beginning of his activities as a collector. Hermann J. Painitz furnished from May to July the artistic framework for the newly created sonusiade series of chamber music concerts.
In the 2016 season, a multifaceted exhibition programme was presented in the Museum Liaunig. The main show “Augen-Blicke” in the long gallery, which can be seen from outside, will again be compiled from the constantly growing collection of contemporary art and will focus on new acquisitions. Furthermore, a number of retrospectives are planned for the special exhibitions room, which for the first time will also be used for concerts. As part of the “old friends” series of presentations, works from Drago j. Prelog (May/June), Hans Staudacher (July/August) and Josef Mikl (September/October) will be displayed in sequence. These are artists with whom Herbert Liaunig has enjoyed friendly ties ever since he began his collecting activities more than 50 years ago. In addition, the museum exhibits historical collections of decorated glass and portrait miniatures from the 16th to 19th century, and has now added a new presentation of African beaded art. Another highpoint is the opening of the sculpture park, which extends above the largely underground museum. In good weather, this new feature will offer an invitation to stroll through a spacious park landscape and interact with the works, which have been placed in a relationship to the natural surroundings in which they stand. Together with the works presented in the circular sculpture depot, this open-air exhibition constitutes a representative selection of pieces by Austrian and international sculptors and object artists that extends from the classic modern period to the present day.
The 2016 exhibition contains 180 works from 64 artists consisting of newly acquired and previously unseen paintings, sculptures, object art and graphics. The exhibition, which focuses of recent art history and current, contemporary Austrian art, manifests itself as an experience that is both pleasurable and lasting. It offers arresting diversity in the form of singular, specially selected, exemplary works and installations, which are nonetheless generally gathered in groups that furnish comparisons and contrasts.
Artists: Marc Adrian, Karel Appel, Christian Ludwig Attersee, Bernard Aubertin, ONA B., Anna-Maria Bogner, Tony Cragg, Canan Dagdelen, Gunter Damisch, Oliver Dorfer, Manfred Erjautz, Tone Fink, Karl Anton Fleck, Adolf Frohner, Jakob Gasteiger, Tibor Gáyor, Franz Graf, Helmuth Gsöllpointner, Erwin Heerich, Wolfgang Hollegha, Hildegard Joos, Peter Krawagna, Suse Krawagna, richard kriesche, Hans Kupelwieser, Edit Lajos, Maria Lassnig, Franz Lerch, Markus Lüpertz, Gottfried Mairwöger, Dóra Maurer, Jürgen Messensee, Josef Mikl, Hannes Mlenek, Gerhardt Moswitzer, Zoran Music, Heribert Nothnagel, Ingo Nussbaumer, Franz Xaver Ölzant, Josef Pillhofer, Markus Prachensky, Norbert Pümpel, Gerwald Rockenschaub, Robert Schaberl, Hubert Scheibl, Eva Schlegel, Walter Schmögner, Martin Schnur, Klaus J. Schoen, ManfreDu SCHU, Zbyněk Sekal, Peter Sengl, David Smyth, Fritz Steinkellner, Wolfgang Stifter, Esther Stocker, Helmut Swoboda, Walter Vopava, Manfred Wakolbinger, Wolfgang Walkensteiner, Walter Weer, Max Weiler, Turi Werkner, Markus Wilfling, Fritz Wotruba und Erwin Wurm.
In the reopening year following enlargement, five exhibitions await the visitor. Under the title WIRKLICHKEITEN (REALITIES) works of Herzig, Jungwirth, Kocherscheidt, Pongratz, Ringel and Zeppel-Sperl will be on display along with a one-man show by the Irish artist Sean Scully. In addition, the historic collections of decorated glass, portrait miniatures and the Gold of the Akan provide a conscious contrast programme to the presentations of contemporary art.
Following the reconstruction work, a new artistic intervention has been integrated into the architecture of "querkraft", which has won numerous awards and is characterised by fair-faced concrete, steel and glass. As a counterpoint to Brigitte Kowanz’s light installation in the exit area of the underground cube housing the gold collection, Esther Stocker has designed the corridor leading to the glass and portrait miniature exhibitions. Via this connecting passage visitors can also enter the impressive, circular sculpture depot, which is now accessible for the first time.
The Exhibition WIRKLICHKEITEN (REALITIES) has been curated by Hans-Peter Wipplinger and occupied the museum’s large exhibition hall and adjacent graphics room. With some 250 works comprised of paintings, drawings, prints and sculptural pieces, this presentation constitutes the most comprehensive overview to date of the loose WIRKLICHKEITEN artistic group, which at the end of the 1960s was formed by Wolfgang Herzig, Martha Jungwirth, Kurt Kocherscheidt, Peter Pongratz, Franz Ringel and Robert Zeppel-Sperl. As opposed to the stylistic directions of the period, which were dominated by the Viennese school of fantastic realism and abstractionism, as well as emerging avant-garde tendencies such as minimal and conceptual art, which declared painting to be obsolete, the WIRKLICHKEITEN pursued “open” painting that was far removed from academic dogmas and the tyrannies of fashion.
A considerable number of the exhibits in this
show are not only on public display for the first time, but are also making
their debut in print. A richly illustrated accompanying publication with
content that is as profound as it is entertaining and around 350 colour images,
offers an invitation to in-depth perusal.
major Sean Scully show, the Museum Liaunig opened the new space for special
Scully, who was born in Dublin in 1945, currently numbers among the leading
exponents of absolute, non-figurative painting that is influenced decisively by
the use of colour. The paintings, which are composed of simple, geometric,
fundamental elements consisting of rectangles, squares and bar-like stripes,
are based on a strongly emotional, impasto painting method that is both
intensive and differentiated.
Seventeen paintings and four watercolours formed the contingent of the exhibition of the artist at the Museum Liaunig. The exhibition, curated by Peter Baum, is accompanied by a large-format catalogue.
This artistically and ethnologically unique collection of African gold, which can be viewed in an underground, purpose-built annex and during past years has already delighted the museum’s visitors, is seen as a counterpoint to the displays of contemporary art. 2015, the attractively designed permanent exhibition was for the last time on display in the dark-blue, cuboid room with its spotlighted showcase landscape and accessible treasure chamber. The exhibits in the Liaunig collection, which include examples of all the most important types of Akan artefacts, display both outstanding aesthetic quality and a very high degree of craftsmanship, as demonstrated by the extremely fine and delicate waxed thread technique pieces. They provide an insight into the art and culture of the individual courts of the Akan and form one of the world’s largest and most significant collections of this type. Collections of comparable dimensions are only found in the British Museum in London, the Museum of Fine Arts in Houston and the Gold of Africa Museum in Cape Town.
The Akan Gold collection was documented scientifically by Doran H. Ross und Georg Eisner in
the catalogue of the same name published in 2008.
The enlargement of the museum building also allows the presentation of the Liaunig glass collection to a broader public. In a purpose-designed room and exhibition showcases, glasses from various epochs are on display. The composition of 120 select masterpieces provides a survey of the European history of glass from its beginnings in Venice around 1500 to the days of the Congress of Vienna and presents the diverse and innovative ways glass can be designed in.
The Liaunig glass collection was documented scientifically by Regine Kovacek in the catalogue "Schnitt und Farbe" published in 2015.
Of the almost 300 miniatures in the Liaunig collection, a representative selection of 100 items painted in Europe between 1590 and 1900 is shown in a generous display case landscape. The range spans from the Elizabethan period with Hilliard via Cooper, Smart and Cosway up to the early 19th century. Continental Schools comprise masterworks by Petitot, Liotard, Füger, Isabey and Daffinger, the leading miniature painter of the Viennese Biedermeier period.
Furthermore, the Liaunig collection of miniatures contains an especially large number of likenesses from the politically turbulent times of the English Civil War and Oliver Cromwell in the mid-17th century, as well as numerous portraits from the years of the French revolution and the subsequent Napoleonic wars between 1790 and 1815.
The portrait miniatures are documented scientifically in a catalogue written by Dr. Bodo Hofstetter.
Renovation work to expand the Museum began at the end of the 2013 season – again under the tried-and-trusted lead of the Vienna architecture bureau "querkraft".
Due the construction works Museum Liaunig was closed during 2014.
The current art exhibition taking place at the Museum Liaunig in Neuhaus/Suha tells of buildings and sculptures and of designed surfaces and formed structures. This year, sculptures, paintings and architecture will be on display under the motto of "From surfaces to spaces". The who’s who of the Austrian sculpting and architecture scene (which has had a significant impact on the 20th century) ranges from Abraham to Gironcoli and Wotruba. The 160 m exhibition space resembles an industrial hall and also features works by students of some prominent pioneers – artists of the following generations such as Erjautz, Becksteiner, Trenkwalder with his monumental ceramic sculptures and Dörflinger with his organic-looking works. The show presents an exciting interplay between "surface and space" and is complemented by picturesque representations of the theme (e.g. by Lassnig, Motherwell, Schilling, Prachensky and Rainer).
Pure architecture: The small yet refined extra exhibition contains sketches, models and photos by architects such as querkraft, Coop Himmelb(l)au, Hollein, Peichl, Domenig, Hadid and Woods and is all about castles in the sky, ivory towers and cabinets of wonder and about projects completed by museum owner Herbert Liaunig and visions of his preferred architecture.
The aim of the collector Herbert Liaunig and his art-loving family, was to offer the public access to important works and major blocks from his art collection, which has been built up over more than forty years and centres on painting, sculpture and singular works on paper. The objective was to thus shed light on the astonishing potential of Austrian contemporary art and this intention attains preliminary fruition during the current year with the exhibition "Reality and abstraction 2".
Accompanied by a richly illustrated, in-depth catalogue book (edited by Silvie Aigner), which is the fourth publication in a series, the current cross-section of the museum’s collection shows no less than 200 works. To a large extent, these consist of concrete art, geometric abstraction, minimalism and monochrome painting.
As a follow-up to the selection of works from the Liaunig Collection shown last year, during 2011 and 2012 the Liaunig Museum will be presenting an extensive exhibition with a focus on art from 1980 until the present day.
The exhibition, which will be displayed in two parts under the title "Reality and Abstraction", will spotlight major aspects of contemporary Austrian art, supplemented by examples of work from international artists.
Part I of the show will open in May 2011 and present expressive-gestural tendencies in painting, sculpture and graphics. In 2012, this will be followed by Part II, which will be concerned primarily with concrete and reductive positions.
Parallel to the exhibition, a 212-page, richly illustrated catalogue with an introduction by Peter Baum is to be published.
The much-praised opening exhibition furnished a cross-section of the collection's highlights. This is now to be augmented with a finely tuned supplementary exhibition composed entirely of works from the collection. Over 350 exhibits, from Avramidis to Zechyr, arranged in sections of art historical relevance, will clarify the potential and scope of the cultural renaissance that followed the end of World War II. The new exhibition showcases painters, sculptors and draughtsmen of the transition period such as Boeckl, Berg, Fronius und Wotruba, all the major representatives of concrete art such as Hildegard Joos and Marc Adrian, as well as representatives of the abstract and the informal (Prachensky, Staudacher, Mikl, Hollegha and Rainer). The exhibits also include works by Kolig, Gironcoli, Goeschl or Ölzant.
The visual concept of the exhibition, which is dominated by daylight, promotes an exciting and generous overall impression. A thrilling panorama is created, full of shared characteristics and artistic contrasts with pointers to an art scene that particularly in the 1960s was still expanding. Parallel to the exhibition, a 160-page, richly illustrated catalogue with an introduction by Peter Baum is to be published.
On August 29, 2008, the private museum owned by the industrialist and art collector, Herbert W. Liaunig, is to be opened in Neuhaus/Suha, Carinthia, by the Austrian president, Heinz Fischer. In a display area of around 3200 m² (large exhibition hall, graphics room and viewing depot), a selection of contemporary art from Herbert Liaunig’s extensive collection will be on show. Moreover, as a challenging counterpoint to the modern works, Herbert Liaunig’s collection of African gold, which is unique from both an artistic and an ethnological perspective, will be available for viewing in a purpose-built, underground annex (350 m²).
The focus of the first museum presentation for 2008/09, which will consists of ten connected groups of works in the large exhibition hall, will be on Geometric Abstraction and Op Art (Marc Adrian, Helga Philipp, Richard Kriesche, Hermann J. Painitz, Joos+Joos), the expanded circle of the Galerie St. Stephan (Rainer, Mikl, Prachensky, Hollegha, Staudacher, Bischoffshausen), the representatives of “pure” painting with its meditative tendencies, such as Bohatsch, Swoboda, Stanzl, Gasteiger or Hikade, and the “Neuen Wilden” including large works by Anzinger, Damisch, Schmalix, Klinkan and Mosbacher. Individualists such as Nitsch and Gironcoli, Tony Cragg, Gerhard Moswitzer, Julie Hayward from Salzburg and the Carinthians Meina Schellander and Cornelius Kolig will also be well represented in the exhibition.
The extensive “mixing” of painting and sculpture provides a confrontation with characteristic works from important Austrian sculptors, which begins with Wotruba, Avramidis, Bertoni, Hoflehner, Urteil and Prantl, includes Eder, Goeschl, Pillhofer, Reiter, Nakajima and Oswald Stimm, and ends with Erwin Wurm.
The graphics section, where in combination with sculptural drawings many of the smaller sculptures are to be found, is dominated by Austria’s leading draughtsmen in the period commencing in 1945 such as Absolon and Moldovan, Hradil and Fleck, Brus and Pichler. Objects from Fink, Panzer and Schmögner offer a counterpoint to these works.
The Akan gold collection
The permanent exhibition, “Akan Gold“, which is housed in a dark blue, underground cube, is accessed via a narrow passage containing a light installation from Brigitte Kowanz. The 600 objects, which convince with their formal richness and expressiveness, represent important historical and artistic artefacts from various Ghanaian tribes such as the Baule, Ashanti and Fante. Herbert Liaunig’s African collection, which has been scientifically processed by the American Doran H. Ross and installed by the architect and the museum designer Rolf. E. Hartmann, can be rated among the world’s three largest museum collections of Ghanaian insignia alongside those of the British Museum in London, the Museum of Fine Arts in Houston and the Gold of Africa Museum in Cape Town.