Birthday party with Titian at the KHM

This autumn, the Kunsthistorisches Museum Vienna devotes itself entirely to women in Venice at the time of the Renaissance. Painted by the exceptional artist Titian and his contemporaries. The museum celebrates its 130th birthday in 2021 with the exhibition highlight "Titian's Vision of Women: Beauty - Love - Poetry".

There is no getting around this show in the autumn: Old Masters are celebrated with a major special exhibition at the Kunsthistorisches Museum Vienna (KHM). At its center is the important Venetian Renaissance painter Titian (c. 1488/90-1576) and his contemporaries Jacopo Tintoretto, Paolo Veronese, Palma Vecchio, Paris Bordone, and Lorenzo Lotto. What is special about the exhibition "Titian's Vision of Women: Beauty - Love - Poetry" is that it aims specifically to cast light on the presentation of women in Venice of the 16th century.

Around 60 outstanding works from some of the most important museums and collections in the world – like the Louvre in Paris, the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York, the Prado and the Thyssen-Bornemisza Collection in Madrid, the Uffizi in Florence, and the Hermitage in St. Petersburg – supplement paintings from the holdings of the KHM.

After 1500, women increasingly appeared in a new light in painting. The portraits of beautiful women ("Belle Donne") are a phenomenon of art history that developed in Venice during the Renaissance. The poetically erotic portraits of woman created at the time pointed the way for European painting in the centuries that followed.

Even Titian managed to impressively present the women he depicted as being intellectual and elegant, and at the same time idealized and enjoyable. The new exhibition highlights the women themselves, but also their accessories – the fashion, fine fabrics, hairstyles, rich jewels, and pearls of the time.
This autumn, the imposing building on Vienna's Ringstrasse boulevard celebrates not only the opening of the major Titian show, but also a milestone birthday: Emperor Franz Joseph ceremoniously opened the museum 130 years ago on October 17, 1891. It was also opened to the public in the same month.

October 5, 2021 - January 16, 2022


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