Location: Lower Belvedere and Orangery
The night not only governs the rhythm of life of all living creatures, surrounding their sleep, but it also is a mysterious breeding ground for man’s creativity and imagination. Whether a demonic realm of shades, a cosy haven, or a brightly illuminated reflection of itself: numerous artists and scientists of various disciplines have been dealing with the night since time immemorial. The Belvedere is to devote an exhibition to this omnipresent yet seemingly diminishing power that also allows taking an ironical look at the dark hours of the day and images thereof.
If the dark half of the day had long been associated with frequently threatening metaphors, symbols, and personifications, it underwent a wider interpretation and redefinition in the cultural perception of the past 200 years. This was due to new insights gained through scientific methods in various disciplines, including astronomy and psychology, as well as social and civilization processes. In recent years, the night has even developed into a “material” drawn upon by artists – into some “state of the inner mind” that needs to be described from a socially critical perspective.
Awakening the Night - Art from Romanticism to the Present, on view in the Lower Belvedere and the Orangery from 24 October, highlights. On display are paintings, prints, drawings, photographs, films, sculptures, and objects by such artists as Caspar David Friedrich, Ferdinand Georg Waldmüller, Hans Makart, Emil Nolde, Ernst Ludwig Kirchner, René Magritte, Paul Delvaux, Rodney Graham, and Ansel Adams. Works from the Belvedere’s own holdings are complemented by loans exemplifying various international approaches to the subject.