Special exhibitions

See Who We Are.
100 Objects from the Museum Collection

03 10 2020 – 05 04 2021

Take a tour of the collection: from the sketchbooks of Bregenzerwald baroque builders via a high-wheel bicycle or a medieval palm Sunday donkey to paintings of Angelika Kauffmann and Rudolf Wacker.

Exhibitions in the Atrium (Free entry!)

New exhibition in progress.

Interventions and cooperations

Home Sweet Home

Intervention in the Showcases on the Second Floor, until end of June

What we playfully imagined when we were kids becomes a very real issue later: the idea of our own four walls – their location, dimension, appearance, furnishing. Most of us take a home for granted and do not give fundamental thought to it – something that might change when we are forced to stay at home, and even more so if, all of a sudden, you no longer have a roof over your head. This small exhibition in five showcases asks questions, in passing, concerning the ideal home, based on a selection of historical doll houses and works made by Vorarlberg artists.


Light Installation by Miriam Prantl in the Staircase

The Vorarlberg artist Miriam Prantl created the light installation Colours/Lights/Lake for the staircase featuring a gentle play of colours that reflects different light atmospheres at Lake Constance. The railing is equipped with LED strip lights whose upward light movement corresponds to the programming of seven light boxes in the stairwell. Slowing down, calming down, contemplation – the effect of the colours and the light attune visitors for the exhibition.  


Extra-mural Exhibitions Co-operation

allerArt Bludenz and Kukuphi Kellergalerie, Bludenz | 25 June until 5 August
Art Acquisitions Made by Local Government in 2020

Werkraumdepot Bregenzerwald, Andelsbuch | permanent
Werkraum Depot – A Study Collection of Contemporary Craftsmanship/Design

Metzler naturhautnah, Egg | permanent
Visit of the House Spirits. Exhibits from the Collection of the vorarlberg museum

Museum Huber-Hus, Lech | until 14 February
The Sound of Lech

Museum Großes Walsertal, Sonntag | 1 May until 10 October
The Painter Otmar Burtscher 1894–1966

Kunstforum Montafon, Schruns | 17 September until 17 October
SilvrettAtelier 2020

DOCK 20, Lustenau | 13 November until 16 January 2022
Gesine Probst-Bösch. “Zehn Pfeile, ein Herz und eine Seele”

Core exhibitions

Weltstadt oder so, Foto Miro Kuzmanovic
Weltstadt oder so, Foto Miro Kuzmanovic

Cosmopolitan City or?

Brigantium in the 1st Century A.D. Exhibition on the 3rd Floor

A forum the size of a football pitch, an ancient Roman spa, the craft and trade quarter at the Tschermakgarten in Bregenz – the public and private buildings of Brigantium dating from the first century A.D. all fire up your imagination. Was Bregenz a city during the time of the Romans? It seems logical to assume, but there is no clear evidence. While the exhibition Romans or? dealt with who had been buried in the local burial ground, Cosmopolitan City or? is all about living together in the place called Brigantium. Were the tasks of a community realised here? Did they have an administration as well as a fiscal and social system? How was the economic and religious life organised? Based on the most recent scientific findings and archaeological finds, the exhibition invites visitors to speculate about Brigantium, its residents and visitors.

Ausstellungsansicht vorarlberg. ein making-of, Foto: Markus Tretter
Ausstellungsansicht vorarlberg. ein making-of, Foto: Markus Tretter

vorarlberg. ein making-of

An Exhibition on the History of Vorarlberg

How did Vorarlberg become what it seems to be like today? The exhibition vorarlberg. a making-of questions the past and present of a region which, over the course of its eventful history, has been subject to various cultural, political and economic influences. It does not tell “the” story but should be seen as more of a “history laboratory” which utilises topics such as migration, identity and belonging to stimulate contemplation and debate on Vorarlberg’s past and present.

Ausstellungsansicht ganznah, Foto: Markus Tretter
Ausstellungsansicht ganznah, Foto: Markus Tretter

ganznah. Touching Stories from Everyday Life

until 09 05 2020

A trapeze artist from Feldkirch who performed at the world-famous Sarrasani Circus; a nurse who collects all kinds of nursing utensils; an imam who does ritual washing of the dead. These far-apart worlds and stories have one thing in common: They all involve touch. Lips, hands, fists – fragments of narratives and memories open up a panorama of popular customs surrounding touch. Touch can extend across borders and it can provoke, it can be experienced as threatening or pleasurable, it can stand both for basic trust and profession. “close to heart”: a rulebook exploring touch – need, taboo and refusal.

Ausstellungsansicht buchstäblich vorarlberg, Foto: Markus Tretter
Ausstellungsansicht buchstäblich vorarlberg, Foto: Markus Tretter

buchstäblich vorarlberg

Insights into the Collection

The museum’s collection comprises close to 160,000 objects from the fields of archaeology, art, everyday culture and history. The exhibition showcases important and less important objects from the museum’s rich holdings in alphabetical order. It starts with the letter “A” for “angelicamad” showing engravings by the artist Angelika Kauffmann, and ends with the letter “Z” for “zahla” (to pay), which features the hoard of coins found at Sonderberg Castle. In between schnapps glasses, self-portraits by Edmund Kalb, pommels, the estate of Fritz Krcal, priest‘s vestments, herbariums …

Coming up

2000 m above Sea Level.
Vorarlberg, Silvretta and Art

Exhibition in the Atrium | 27 March until 27 June

In five chapters, the exhibition spans a bridge between “the mountains” – the main focus of the collection – and eight artistic positions created during the “SilvrettAtelier2020”, a two-week art workshop held in the Silvretta mountain range in Montafon. The selected works pick out the mountain as an idol whose inaccessibility is captured, at least in the image. The central themes are places where people long to be, peak victories, but also interference with nature by tourism. The exhibition features views of well-known Alpinists in the mountains, classical Land art projects, humorous reproductions of famous peaks as “mountains to go“ or photographic panoramas of our domesticated high-Alpine landscape. The exhibits are documented in a catalogue.

Johannes Kaufmann, Der Nichtschwimmer, ÖlLeinwand, 2012
Johannes Kaufmann, Der Nichtschwimmer, ÖlLeinwand, 2012

At Your Own Risk

Special Exhibition on the Third Floor | 29 May until spring 2023

What frightens you? Where do you feel safe? Who or what protects you? The strategies to deal with dangers have changed over time. Our ancestors started to secure slopes and regulate streams and rivers, they founded fire brigades, insurance companies and the police force who have always been, and still are, monitoring compliance with the rules. Meanwhile, the greatest threat to mankind seems to be man himself – climatic disasters, wars, the pandemic. Safety is primarily built on trust – formerly in the good Lord, today in the government. How safe do you feel? Come and explore this exhibition … at your own risk.

With the support of Vorarlberger Landes-Versicherung V.a.G and Josko Fenster & Türen GmbH.

Bild zur Ausstellung "Karl Sillaber und C4 Neues Bauen in Tirol und Vorarlberg"

Karl Sillaber and C4
“Neues Bauen” or New Ways of Building in Tyrol and Vorarlberg

Special Exhibition on the Fourth Floor | 26 June until January 2022

The members of this group “C4 Architekten“ – Max Fohn, Helmut Pfanner, Karl Sillaber and the Tyrolian Friedrich Wengler – are considered the pioneers of the new building style. Their first project, the primary school of Nüziders (1960–63) is a key project of modern school design in Vorarlberg, which was followed by several other new school buildings (Hasenfeld/Lustenau primary school, HAK Bregenz secondary commercial school, Nenzing comprehensive school). The single and multi-family houses, office and industrial buildings as well as indoor and outdoor swimming pools that were built in their common creative period from 1960 until 1979 in Tyrol and Vorarlberg are less well known. These are all important examples of modern architecture, which are shown in the first monographic exhibition on the work of the C4 architects and in the accompanying catalogue.

In cooperation with the Architekturzentrum Wien.

Nino Malfatti. By and Large

Exhibition in the Atrium | 17 July until 3 October

For 35 years, the Tyrolean artist Nino Malfatti has been painting and drawing nothing else but mountains. His works are not suited for tourism promotion. The artist, who was born in 1940 in Innsbruck and has already participated in the Kassel Documenta, is not concerned with the idyllic scenery. He is interested in the changing light conditions and shadow projections, the spatial-atmospheric impact of the mountains. On his hikes, the excellent mountaineer, in a traditional old-fashioned manner, sketches and takes photographs of the mountains’ vaults, structures, outcrops, colours and rock formations. Based on these sketches and photographs, he paints the landscapes in his Berlin studio. 90 mountain views from Tyrol and Vorarlberg, some of them large-sized, are shown in the largest Malfatti exhibition ever, extending over the atrium’s total height of 23 meters.

Heinz Greissing. His Last Paintings

Exhibition in the Atrium | 23 October until March 2022

During the last years of his life, the Atlantic Ocean in southern Spain and its surroundings nearby count among the central artistic themes of the Vorarlberg painter Heinz Greissing. He created intensive images of the wild sea – in the colours of the light changing from morning to night, along with the rising and falling of the tide, and the foaming waves from greyish-green to almost black during a storm. Greissing depicts the ever-changing light conditions and constant movement in the stripe paintings that are typical of him. The exhibition also features large-sized paintings without stripes, which radiate the calm and seemingly endless expanse of the Atlantic Ocean. If strong winds prevented him from painting on the beach, the artist turned to the pines and Scotch pines in the nearby surroundings. The sea, the trees, his last paintings – they all pay tribute to a great painter who died in May 2020 at the age of 87.

Stefan Sagmeister & Jessica Walsh, Porträt, 2013, Copyright John Madere
Stefan Sagmeister & Jessica Walsh, Porträt, 2013, Copyright John Madere

Sagmeister & Walsh Beauty

to be announced

With their exhibition project Beauty, the New York based graphic artist Stefan Sagmeister, who is originally from Vorarlberg, and the US graphic designer Jessica Walsh provide a visually powerful multimedia plea for the joy of beauty. The exhibition explores the reasons why people feel attracted to beauty and what positive effects beauty has. Using examples from graphic arts, product design, architecture and city planning, Sagmeister & Walsh demonstrate that beautiful objects, buildings and strategies not only make people happier but also work better.

The exhibition is a cooperation between the Museum Angewandte Kunst, Frankfurt, and the MAK in Vienna.