The galleries of Innsbruck, several situated in the city centre and easily accessible on foot, are dedicated to the many different facets of visual art.
One of Innsbruck’s most important locations for art lovers is Maria-Theresien-Strasse, home of the Galerie im Taxispalais, the Galerie Thoman, as well as Kunstraum Innsbruck, all devoted to contemporary art. Galerie Thoman, founded in 1977, focuses on paintings and sculpture with works by notable artists including Siegfried Anzinger and John M. Armleder, Jannis Kounellis and Hermann Nitsch, Franz West, Eugen Wurm and Otto Zitko. In close collaboration with these artists the Thoman family features exhibitions, publications, production works and artist’s editions.
Among the local galleries, Kunstraum Innsbruck bears the most similarity with the White Cube concept, showcasing images, room-filling installations and various objects along with music, readings and public dialogue, all contained within a 300m2 space. Located just opposite also on Maria-Theresien-Strasse, the Tyrol county gallery Galerie im Taxispalais focuses on Austrian and international contemporary art. Expertly run by Beate Ermacora since 2009, this space features solo exhibitions as well as themed expos focusing on contemporary Austrian painting, mythical figures or artistic memories. Educational activities, a reading room and artist discussions complement the gallery programme.
The city of Innsbruck is also serviced by its own exhibition centre: the Galerie im Andechshof. At its premises in the historic old town this gallery encourages and promotes young up and coming local artists, reflecting new trends in art. The Tiroler Kunstpavillon, operated by the Tyrolean artist’s association ‘Tiroler Künstlerschaft’, is also geared mainly towards showcasing local works of art. Located within Hofgarten,Innsbruck’s ImperIal garden, this former summer residence of the regional governor serves as the setting for a wide ranging programme of exhibitions selected through a tendering process, open to members of the Künstlerschaft and international artists.
Johann Widauer, who operates the quaint Galerie Widauer on Erlerstraße, has adopted quite a different approach to art. A passionate art collector himself, Widauer displays the works of his personal favourite artists including Heinz Gappmayr, Peter Kogler, Lawrence Weiner, Richard Hoeck, John Miller, as well as Heike and Thomas Bayrle, only to mention a few. The result is dynamic custom installations, often specifically designed for the exhibition space, which, incidentally, was a former decoration shop.
The nearby Galerie FO.KU.S, in the BTV Stadtforum, has photographic art as its primary focus. Following the redevelopment of Bank für Tirol und Vorarlberg by Heinz Tesar, the premises now feature a spacious exhibition room, which is displaying works by Paul Albert Leitner, Jules Spinatsch, Paolo Pellegerin, Shirana Shahbazi and Lukas Schaller. The works of the latter, one of Austria’s most sought-after architectural photographers, point visitors to another remarkable exhibition space: the aut.architektur und tirol. Located in the premises of former beer brewery Adambräu, it is testimony to the close ties betweenInnsbruck and contemporary architecture.
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