Lentos Art Museum Linz

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The Lentos Art Museum Linz as seen from the Nibelungen Bridge in March 2007.
View from the Danube at night.

The Lentos Art Museum Linz is a museum of the avant-garde in Linz . As the successor to the New Gallery of the City of Linz, it is one of the most important museums of modern and contemporary art in Austria . The 130 meter long, internationally acclaimed building has around 8000 m² of floor space and is located directly on the Danube between the Nibelungen Bridge and the Brucknerhaus. Its appearance is largely characterized by a transparent glass envelope that is illuminated at night. There is a café-restaurant on the west side of the ground floor.

The name Lentos is derived from the Celtic word lentos (flexible, curved), which was probably the original name for Linz (the Danube flows in a curve through the eastern part of the city).

History and architecture

After the Second World War , the City of Linz's Neue Galerie was founded. The basis was formed by 120 works of art from the collection of the Berlin art dealer Wolfgang Gurlitt (1888–1965), including paintings and graphics by Gustav Klimt , Egon Schiele , Oskar Kokoschka , Emil Nolde , Lovis Corinth and Max Pechstein . Building on these holdings, the city of Linz decided to operate the Neue Galerie as a city museum from 1953. From 1979 the gallery was located on the second floor of Lentia 2000 . In 1998 the city decided to build the Lentos Art Museum Linz, which opened on May 18, 2003.

The design by the Zurich architects Weber & Hofer was finalized on November 16, 1998 after a two-stage competition with 219 entries. The 33 million euros project costs for the Swiss box with a clear view , as the then director Peter Baum outlined the concept, were raised by the state of Upper Austria , the city and public and private sponsors . The construction time was 29 months. The museum is a cuboid structure that completely fills the competition area over a length of 130 meters; According to Jürg Weber, this architecture is a reduction to the absolutely essential . Since a building of this low height, Weber continued, would not make a meaningful contribution to the city skyline, a different accent was set: a large hole in the cubature, the so-called "Danube window". This frames the view of the Urfahr district and the Pöstlingberg , the part of the building above the 60 meter wide “window” is designed as a cantilever bridge. The “captured panorama image” would metaphorically turn the museum's content outward. The facade cladding of the concrete cuboid consists of a total of 1,800 laminated safety glass with the repeated imprint art museum lentos .

The semi-transparent facade is one of the design elements used by the architects to counteract the visual heaviness of the concrete cuboid. The suspension of the laminated glass facade, the steel profile of which protrudes over the edges of the building and, together with the glass panels, which are transparent or reflective depending on the incidence of light, optically transfers the contours of the erratic block into the surroundings. Depending on the point of view, the edges of the building merge with the city silhouette or with the sky over Linz.

The large recess on the ground floor (sculpture hall, "Danube window") is clad with reflective glass panels like the facade. Seen from the city side, the Danube is reflected in it, optically enlarging the window and inducing an illusion of transparency and lightness.

The transparently designed ribbon windows, just above ground level on the north and south facades, counteract the impression of solidity.

Today, the Lentos presents itself as a museum that aims to present and convey key topics and positions in contemporary art production in relation to the art history of the 20th century. For illustration, works and schools of modern art and its consequences are shown, with a focus on the own collection in a specific selection. Exhibitions with loans of museum art from the 20th century complement the program and convey a genealogy of contemporary art.

A program of events, guided tours, workshops for children and much more supplements the current exhibitions.


The art museum's collection includes around 1500 works from the fields of painting, sculpture and object art, more than 10,000 works on paper and around 850 photographs, including important contributions to the development of artistic photography (A. Rodtschenko, Man Ray, H. Bayer).

The earliest works in the museum's collection date from the first half of the 19th century ( Caspar David Friedrich , Johann Baptist Reiter ). In the area of ​​classical modernism, the Lentos has important paintings by Gustav Klimt, Egon Schiele "Father and Son Bensch", Oskar Kokoschka, Lovis Corinth and Max Pechstein. In addition, the collection includes the interwar period with works from German and Austrian Expressionism and New Objectivity. The time after 1945 is illustrated with works and ensembles of international art, including paintings, sculptures and graphics by Karel Appel , Herbert Bayer , Ernst Wilhelm Nay , Andy Warhol , Keith Haring , Gottfried Helnwein , Hans Staudacher , Maria Lassnig , Markus Lüpertz , Ludwig Merwart , Arnulf Rainer , Sean Scully , Valie Export u. a. The holdings are continuously supplemented through purchases. In changing exhibitions, the collections, modern art and current art trends are presented. These works are also accessible online in a database.

Internationality of the sculpture, plastic and object collection

The following international artists are represented in the sculpture , plastic and object collection of the Lentos Art Museum Linz: Stephan Balkenhol , Ernst Barlach , Michael Buthe , Anthony Caro , Tony Cragg , Canan Dagdelen , Amadeo Gabino , Mathias Goeritz , Shirazeh Houshiary , Leiko Ikemura , Donald Judd , Jiří Kolář , Catherin Lee , Thomas Lenk , Baltasar Lobo , Claes Oldenburg , AR Penck , Günter Praschak , Klaus Rinke , Karl Schmidt-Rottluff , Tim Scott , Daniel Spoerri , Rini Tandon , Jan Voss , Simon Wachsmuth and Tom Wesselmann .



  • several different exhibitions per year (in previous years approx. 6 to 14 per year)
  • Current exhibitions including preview and archive on the Lentos website


Individual evidence

  1. Marlis Nograsek, Julia Pendl, Reinhold Weinberger: AK Wohnbau WS 10/11  ( page no longer available , search in web archivesInfo: The link was automatically marked as defective. Please check the link according to the instructions and then remove this notice. (PDF; 14.5 MB) p. 30f. (accessed on May 25, 2012)@1@ 2Template: Toter Link / ftp.tugraz.at  
  2. orf.at of March 17, 2017: Hemma Schmutz new Lentos director ; Retrieved March 19, 2017
  3. ^ Wiener Zeitung: Lentos: "We have to know what belongs to us" . Article dated August 23, 2017, accessed August 26, 2017.
  4. Inaugural press conference Hemma Schmutz . Press conference on May 31, 2017, accessed on August 26, 2017.

Web links

Commons : Lentos Kunstmuseum Linz  - Collection of images, videos and audio files

Coordinates: 48 ° 18 ′ 31 ″  N , 14 ° 17 ′ 22 ″  E