Franz Joseph. The Emperor and the Belvedere
In 1848, Archduke Franz Joseph, having just come of age, ascended the Austrian imperial throne, which he would hold for almost seventy years, until is death in 1916. His reign encompassed the periods of Late Biedermeier, Historicism, the Vienna Secession, and, finally, Early Modernism at the beginning of the twentieth century.
This great stylistic diversity is not only reflected by a dozen of portraits of the emperor and his wife, Empress Elizabeth, which the Belvedere will be presenting from its own holdings on the occasion of the 100th anniversary of Franz Joseph’s death, but also by the collection as such. Works acquired during his government – but not necessarily at his behest – will be marked accordingly. A special charm lies in this ‘imperial’ perspective, which visitors will come across during their tour time and again. In this way, the epoch is experienced in its own light and in ever-new, surprising inflections as if through a kaleidoscope.