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Phone: +43-2243-370 50 150
Fax: +43-2243-370 50-22
Website: http://www.essl.museum

ESSL MUSEUM - Contemporary Art

An open quality, quite literally, characterises the exhibition spaces. Visitors enjoying the exhibitions in the Large Hall also absorb the green expanse of the nature reserve on the River Danube outside, the many windows providing numerous surprising vistas.
While more closed off, the seven gallery rooms are lit by daylight coming in through the generously dimensioned skylights. Architect Heinz Tesar gave the museum, which was completed in 1999, a subtle balance of image and light areas, which also encompasses darker zones, as in front of the Rotunda, for instance. This permits visitors to be immersed in different atmospheres with varying conditions of light.

Permanent Collection

With more than 6.000 exhibits the Essl Collection today offers an excellent overview of Austrian painting since 1945, placing it in an international context. Collecting in depth was always an essential idea and the artists' development in the course of their oeuvre was to be shown.
The scope of the Austrian exhibits in the Collection ranges from the Abstract Expressionism of the 50s and 60s to the Vienna Actionism and New Painting of the 80s and all the way to the reductionist art of the 90s.
In addition to the post-war paintings the Collection contains an important group of works of Classical Austrian Modernism. In the past few years the selection of the works by international artists has been made mainly on the basis of their significance for painting and their relationship to the Austrian art tradition.
Today the Collection also includes high-quality sculptures and photographs by international artists.



15 March – 26 August 07
35 years of the Essl Museum

For 35 years, Karlheinz and Agnes Essl have been passionate and curious collectors of contemporary art. As a birthday present to themselves and to the public, Karlheinz Essl now presents a spectacular jubilee exhibition. His selection of older and new holdings of his collection showcases the artwork in new contexts, new thematic interrelationships and innovative layouts. Arranged into 15 theme groups, the art collector presents about 300 works by internationally renowned artists in both exhibition premises of The Essl Collection, the Museum and the Schömer-Haus.

16 March – 28 May 07
A disturbing, taboo-breaking interpretation of the Stations of the Cross by the young British artist. Harsh, lurid photographs that are a slap in the face to any conventions of the genre transfer the Passion of Christ into our era with all of its horrors.


01 June – 07 October 07
A series of photographs showing a shocking performance by the American artist as Santa Claus. As so often with Paul McCarthy, myths and consumerist themes or artefacts from day-to-day life in the USA are juxtaposed with excrements by an artist who likes to play with disgust and bourgeois smugness.

Previous Exhibitions


15.01.2006 – 28.01.2007 (SCHÖMER-HAUS)

Eventually, the Essl Collection will house again a representative overview of its own holdings for the duration of a whole year: masterpieces from the focal points of the collection Austrian Art after 1945, as well as contemporary painting, photography, video and sculpture from Europe, North America and Australia. The collector-couple Agnes and Karlheinz Essl compile a selection, which will be on display at the Schömer-Haus for a whole year. The venue is situated only a few minutes’ walk away from the museum – it is here that the exhibition activity of the collection took its beginning in the eighties. The office building of the Schömer enterprise group of Heinz Tesar is equipped with a spectacular exhibition hall, in which the works reveal themselves to the viewer from different levels in ever changing dialogues.

New opening hours Schömer-Haus:
Daily 10 a.m. – 6 p.m., Saturday and Sunday 10 a.m. – 1 p.m. and 2 p.m. – 6 p.m.
Free entrance!

AUSTRIA: 1900 – 2000
Confrontations and Continuities
17.02. – 21.05.2006 (Galleries, Exhibition Hall, Grand Hall)

One century’s history of the development of Austrian Art reflected in a spectacular overview in the entire museum of the Essl Collection. Curated by Professor Wieland Schmied, who is one of the most extraordinary experts in Austrian art, the exhibition offers under the thematic thread "Confrontations – Continuities" his selection of artistic landmarks of the 20th century, with a large variety of loans from important museums, among them works b...+ [ Read all ]

Forthcoming exhibitions

Contemporary Photography from The Essl Museum
07 September – 25 November 07
In recent years, the photography section of The Essl Collection has been greatly expanded by significant new acquisitions. This is an opportunity to present photographs from our holdings to the public in a representative show. About 100 works, among them classics, highlights and young art, stake out an exciting trail through the many-faceted world of art photography. The exhibition addresses topical themes and issues of contemporary photography: analogue vs. digital, objective vs. subjective presentation of pictorial realities, photography as a projection screen for social and political changes, experimental and cross-media photography. Artists include Valerie Bélin, Jean Marc Bustamente, Gregory Crewdson, Judy Dater, Elger Esser, Nan Goldin, Andreas Gursky, Mike Kelley, Marie-Jo Lafontaine, Brandon Lattu, Paul McCarthy, Miao Xiaochun, Tracey Moffat, Tim Roda, Thomas Ruff, Cindy Sherman, Thomas Struth, Sam Talor Wood.

21 September 07 – 03 February 08
Curator: Jonathan Meese

One of Germany’s most prominent contemporary artists at the age of only 36, Jonathan Meese is represented in The Essl Collection with significant works. In the last few years, this e nfant terrible has made a splash in the art scene in and beyond Germany. In his work and his often controversial performances he combines allusions to German mythology and megalomania, pop art and gothic influences and self-reflection. For The Essl Collection Jonathan Meese will create an exuberant installation for the Großer Saal. Sculptures with giant penises, i...+ [ Read all ]


Adults € 7,00
Reduced tickets € 5,00
Family tickets € 14,00
Senior citizens' special reduction (Tuesdays only € 3,50
School children, students, unemployed € 3,50
School children in group € 2,00
Children under 7 free

Annual Ticket € 40,00
Annuela Ticket reduced € 25,00

Programs - in addition to the admission fee
Guided tour € 3,00
Group tour -30 persons € 65,00
Special tour € 3,00
Tour for school groups € 2,00
Art discussions € 3,00
Children's workshop € 6,00
Adults's workshop 2h/3h € 17,00/21,00
"Sunday painters" € 6,00
Open atelier for children € 6,00

Booking of Guided Tours and Events Information Tel: +43 - 2243 - 370 50 / 150

Group tickets may be ordered in advance. Guided tours for the hearing impaired by Mag. Helene Hjarmer in Austrian and International Sign Language are available by prior arrangement. Guided tours in languages other than German are likewise available by prior arrangement. For further information please contact Mag. Andreas Hoffer.

Opening hours

Tue - Sun: 10.00 - 18.00
Mi: 10.00 - 21.00 - Free Admission 18:00 - 21.00
Mon: closed

Getting there

By Schnellbahn (Rapid Transit) or Bus: The most convenient way to reach the Essl Museum is by taking the Schnellbahn train S40 to Klosterneuburg - Weidling. Trains depart from Spittelau station every half hour at 10 and 40 minutes after the hour or from Heiligenstadt station at 13 and 43 minutes after the hour. Bus No. 239, which will take you to "Leopoldsbrücke - Sammlung Essl", leaves from outside the U4 Terminal Heiligenstadt every 10 to 15 minutes. Bus No. 240, which will take you to "Leopoldsbrücke - Sammlung Essl", leaves from outside the Terminal "Handelskai" (subway U6 and Rapid Transit) every 20 minutes.
By Car: Driving from the center of Vienna to Klosterneuburg takes approximately 15 minutes. Ample parking space is available.
From the Airport: Allow approximately 35 minutes for the drive from Vienna International Airport.
Please click here for a map http://www.sammlung-essl.at/shared/presse/lageplan-quer.gif


Café Museum
A visit to the "Café Museum" requires no admission ticket.
The Café is located on the top floor of the Exhibition Building and has a splendid south-facing terrace with a view of the Sculpture Garden and the surrounding vinyards.

A visit to the Bookshop requires no admission ticket.

Museum internal and external photos (1)

Click on the images to enlarge


Virtual tour

If you have Quicktime installed on your computer, you can undertake a virtual tour through the exhibition building of the Essl Collection. Click on the room that you want to explore using the mouse as a navigation tool:



Consult our calendar for a variety of educational events (in german):



Please see the complete alphabetical list of our featured artists:




The "Essl Museum" organizes two different concert series. With four concerts a year Music in the SCHÖMER BUILDING concentrates above all on New Music and cooperates with the most important Austrian and international ensembles, soloists and conductors. The react_chain_ series, on the other hand, which was created for the new building takes places every month and is devoted to experimental forms of music and those that cross traditional boundaries with an emphasis on improvization and live electronics. The music events are under the artistic and organizational direction of the composer Karlheinz Essl.

List of upcoming concerts... http://www.essl.museum/deutsch/musik/konzerte.htm

Complete information her http://www.essl.museum/englisch/musik/konzerte.htm


Here are the logos of our sponsors to be found:


Venue hire

Booking of Events

The premises of the Exhibition Building and the Café can be booked for festivities and events. We will gladly advise you about supplementary programs such as special guided tours or concerts and will assist you with the organization.
Barbara Kremser
Tel: +43-2243-370 50 / 74