Egon Schiele Museum, Tulln

A specially designed treasure trove will display original work by Schiele and discussions with people from the time using augmented reality will bring scenes from Egon Schiele's world to life.

When Egon Schiele, one of the most important trailblazers and representatives of Viennese Modernism died from Spanish flu in 1918 aged just 28 years old, he was known to many as one of the most important Austrian artists of his time. On the occasion of his 130th birthday on 12 June 2020, the Egon Schiele Museum at the Donaulände in Tulln will be displaying over a dozen original pieces from his so-called ‘Academy period’ (1906-1909) in the treasure trove.

Schiele’s childhood in Tulln

‘Egon Schiele's mother fought for the 16-year-old’s inclusion in the Academy of Visual Arts against the wishes of the guardian Leopold Czihaczek. His talent was barely acknowledged there, but encouraged in the spirit of the imperial-royal teaching. The fact that Schiele felt misunderstood at this institution and had planned his career as a leader of a new movement of artists, fits with the image of a highly successful young man who was rebellious, and who was expected to considerably shape the art of modernity,’ according to Christian Bauer, a renowned expert and curator of the Schiele exhibition.

The academy period

‘To celebrate his 130th birthday, we will be focusing only on these three years: From the young Schiele, lauded as the wonder child of his family, to his academic education to the emancipation and break with the same people. We explain this history at the points when his life and artistic career took off, as everything began when he drew trains from the roof of the station in Tulln’, added Bauer. In addition to the treasure trove with original work, six audio-visual stations will take you on a journey with the world-famous artist to the most significant places in his life: Tulln, Klosterneuburg, Krems, Mühling and his time at the academy in Vienna. The original recordings of his sisters Melanie and Gertie Schiele and his sister-in-law Adele Harms can be heard in this installation. They are based on interviews that Alessandra Comini, the expert in Schiele research, conducted as a young student in the 1960s and takes an authentic journey back in time to the world of this exceptional artist.