The international image of Austria is based to a substantial part on the country's art and culture. This positive image is also of benefit to the overall Austrian economy. Austria's top achievements in cultural aspects as well as an incomparable cultural heritage are considerable locational advantages.
The diversity and wealth of art treasures as well as world-class museums, theatres and concert halls are a fertile ground on which art and culture in Austria flourish even better today than elsewhere.
Museums and galleries
The collections of the Museum of Art History, the Museum of Applied Arts, of the Belvedere and of the Albertina in Vienna are unrivalled. In Styria there is the Joanneum Universal Museum with more than 4.5 million items in its collection at twelve locations. In Linz in Upper Austria, there is the spectacular Lentos art museum with its collection of 1,500 paintings, sculptures and installations, 10,000 works on paper and 1,200 photographs.
Every year, Austria is very prominently represented at the Art Basel, the world's leading international art fair for modern and contemporary art. The domestic galleries cover the range from the classical modern to contemporary art, including large sculptures and pictures, as well as video projections, installations and performances.
Vienna's galleries are booming and are characterised by "woman power". A whole number of young female gallery owners have opened new premises in the past few years. With great energy, these committed young dealers are developing artists' careers and a new generation of collectors.
MQ as an example
The "MuseumsQuartier" in Vienna is one of the ten largest art districts in the world. It encompasses more than 20 cultural institutions, from the Museum of Modern Art Foundation Ludwig Vienna (MUMOK) and the Art Gallery to the Vienna Architecture Centre, the design forum Vienna and the ZOOM Children's Museum. In addition, there is the "Tanzquartier" (dance district) of Vienna that is specialised in contemporary dance and located in the complex covering 60,000m². And in the quartier21, fashion labels, multimedia companies, radio and television stations and workshops for artists in residence can find accommodation and support.
Austria is a good location for artists because the rents are relatively low, the funding opportunities are comprehensive, the political climate is a favourable one and the social system is well developed. Training is also outstanding. Organisations such as the University of Applied Arts and the Academy of Fine Arts are institutions of global renown that attract high-calibre teaching staff and ambitious students.
Institutions and companies in Austria benefit not only from the country's long cultural and artistic tradition. They are also devoting their efforts to the future, for example, the interface between art and technology.
The Ars Electronica Center Futurelab focuses on the future in the nexus of art, technology and society. In artistic, experimental form, they see their work as outlines of possible future scenarios. The successful work of the Ars Electronica Futurelab is directly linked to partners from industry, the creative industry and art, and also from the academic environment and education sector respectively. International artists and researchers who collaborate with the Ars Electronic FutureLab and work in the studio/laboratory as residents are essential for this way of working.