Foreword by Michael Braunsteiner

michael b portrait

Admont Abbey 1074 - 950 years of a living monastery


The 950th anniversary will see a remarkable relaunch of the abbey museums. The 2024 anniversary exhibition offers a varied tour through the fascinating history of the Benedictine monastery. High-calibre treasures from the library, archives and collections, some of which have never been on display before, document both the heyday and the difficult periods of the monastery, which was threatened with dissolution several times. The scientific and cultural achievements of the monastery are also reflected in impressive exhibits.

To mark the anniversary year, the Kunsthistorisches Museum has been reorganised. Together with the permanent exhibition "Mayer Collection" in the room in front of it, all art-historical holdings are now united on the ground floor and brought together in a dialogue. Works from the Middle Ages to the present day are represented: paintings, prints, sculptures, manuscripts and other objects from the Parament and Kunstkammer.

The permanent exhibition in the Gothic Museum is based on a donation from Kuno & Helga Mayer. The 85 exhibits of sacred art are mainly from the late Gothic period. In addition to stained glass and wrought iron art, the main exhibits are sculptures and panel paintings. The artists and workshops represented (Master of Seeon, Master of Kefermarkt, Hans Klocker, Michael Pacher, Hans Multscher, Michel Erhart, Niklaus Weckmann and many more) reflect the art regions of their time.

After the abbey fire in 1865, Fr Gabriel Strobl, one of the most important researchers of his time, established the Natural History Museum, which still exists today, between 1866 and 1906. The insect collection contains 252,000 specimens, including more than 50,000 dipterans (mosquitoes and flies). One highlight is the 242 lifelike wax fruit specimens by P. Constantin Keller (1778-1864). In 2024, bridges will be built from the historical specimens to the art of our time through selective artistic interventions.

In the Museum of Contemporary Art you will find a cross-section of the most recent part of the Admont Abbey collection, which has been under construction since 1997. It consists of over 1000 works by around 180 Austrian artists, most of whom were born in the second half of the 20th century. Two Styrian artists of the inter-war generation, Austrian painting from the 1980s onwards and various themes have their own exhibition areas. The "MADE FOR ADMONT" commissioned art and contemporary interpretations of medieval Madonnas form the focal points.

In 2003, the Admont Abbey Museum had three multimedia rooms designed by Peter Hans Felzmann. The rooms, which were awarded a national prize for multimedia, have now been technically overhauled after 20 years of operation and thus represent the latest state of multimedia technology.

With best wishes for an impressive visit!

Michael Braunsteiner
Artistic Director


Admont Abbey GWK Madonna Kaschauer Guillaume Bruere © Michael Braunsteiner
Admont Abbey GWK Peter Unterthurner © Michael Braunsteiner
Admont Abbey KHM Gothic GWK © Michael Braunsteiner
Gothic Museum c Stefan Leitner
Natural History Museum Wax Fruit Collection www