History Belvedere 21

Contemporary art, film, music, and events in a modern pavilion. Today, the Belvedere 21 is a is a thriving art space and meeting place within Vienna's urban district of the future. The building is considered an architectural icon of post-war Modernism. Initially designed by Karl Schwanzer as the Austrian pavilion for the 1958 World's Fair in Brussels, it was later adapted for the museum's purposes and opened in 1962 as the Museum of the Twentieth Century. Under the name 20er Haus, it soon established itself as a vibrant hub. In 2002 the building was transferred to the Belvedere. Renovated in 2011, it was rebranded as the Belvedere 21 in 2018.

Aussenansicht 20er Haus vom Skulpturengarten
© Museum moderner Kunst Stiftung Ludwig Wien
From World Expo to Belvedere 21

 

 

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1958

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The Austrian pavilion for the world expo in Brussels was built according to the plans of Viennese architect Karl Schwanzer. After the expo, the structure, considered an icon of modern architecture, was adapted for museum purposes and rebuilt at the Schweizergarten in Vienna. The ground floor was vitrified, the courtyard covered, and the facade significantly altered.

 

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1962

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On September 20, the building was inaugurated as the Museum of the Twentieth Century. Within a short time the museum, commonly known as the 20er Haus, became an established and respected venue for contemporary art in Vienna.

 

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2001

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Prior to moving to the newly constructed Museumsquartier, the Museum of Modern Art (today’s mumok) used the building as an exhibition space.

 

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2002

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After being empty for a year, the building was transferred to the Belvedere.

 

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2007

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Architect Adolf Krischanitz, a student of Karl Schwanzer’s, was commissioned with the renovations of the building.

 

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2011

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In November, the renovated building was ceremoniously reopened under a new name:

21er Haus - Museum of Contemporary Art.

 

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2018

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In early 2018, it was renamed the Belvedere 21 and, under the strong umbrella brand of the Belvedere, repositioned as a venue for art, performance, music, and film as well as for lectures, community discussions, and artist talks – a vibrant hub in an up-and-coming urban sector of Vienna.

 

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