A “poet and architect of light”

Members and Anne Thun-Hohenstein visited the atelier of Austrian Artist Brigitte Kowanz where they were received by her son. Kowanz, Professor at the University of Applied Arts, participant of the venice Biennale 2017, was awarded the Grand Austrian State Prize (2009).

For three decades, she has been displaying light as a language, as a code.

says coordinator Anne Thun-Hohenstein who organised the event.

A. Thun-Hohenstein & A. Kowanz


Cube by B. Kowanz

Artworks by B. Kowanz











(For further information click here: http://kowanz.com/en/)


Transparency and brillancy

Coordinator Martha Hanreich and members of Welcome to Austria were given a guided tour of the Albertina’s exhibition of Viennese watercolor paintings. Biedermeier-era painters – most notable among them: Rudolf von Alt – captured nineteenth-century Austrian landscapes and city views in delicately tuned hues.

Viennese Watercolor

Martha Hanreich and members at Albertina

Watercolor flowers








(For further information click here: https://www.albertina.at/en/exhibitions/viennese_watercolour/)

Beating the seasonal rush

Villa Wartholz (1870) near Reichenau a.d. Rax

Members and their families took to the enchanting Christmas market set in the lush outreaches of the Vienna Woods at Reichenau an der Rax. The current mistress of the castle welcomed the group for a private tour held at the palatial Villa Wartholz. It was designed in 1870 by Heinrich von Ferstel in the Historical Revival style for Archduke Karl Ludwig of Austria as a recreational and hunting retreat with a splendid view over the valley (and also where Empress Zita gave birth to Otto von Habsburg in 1912).

We left Vienna under a grey sky. But having reached Gloggnitz not a cloud was to be seen and the day at Villa Wartholz ended under splendid sunshine.

tells coordinator Stefanie Winkelbauer who organised the excursion together with Véronique Dorda.

Lunch at the Schlossgärtnerei Café

Hall ceiling

Guided tour at Schloss Wartholz








(For further information click here: http://www.schloss-wartholz.at)



“If It’s Too Long – Make It Longer”

Members and Anne Thun-Hohenstein were received by Gen. Dir. DDr. Christoph Thun-Hohenstein and guided through the MAK’s most interesting exhibition of the well-known artist Thomas Bayrle who combines artisan techniques with computer-generated art from the information Age.

“iPhone meets Japan” (2017) in the Main Hall


“$” (1980)

Artwork by Bayrle









(For further Information click here: http://www.mak.at/e/thomas_bayrle)


Human Grandeur and Harmony of Form at the Albertina

Coordinator Martha Hanreich and members of Welcome to Austria received a guided visit at the Albertina through the first exhibition in Austria presenting works solely by Raphael.

Raphael’s portrait of Bindo Altoviti

Members at the Albertina

Disputa del Sacramento








Raphael’s thought processes and modes of work, from design to final composition, are illustrated not only by masterful drawings but also by around 20 paintings that simultaneously serve as an overview of the artist’s painted oeuvre. The exhibition draws on the rich collections of the Albertina and the Ashmolean Museum in Oxford.


(For further information click here: http://www.albertina.at/en/raphael)

Vienna at Home

 Newcomers, members of many years and board members of WA met at the 10th traditional Vienna-at-Home Wiener Jause at Renate Christiani‘s Viennese home. Over the years she had welcomed guests from around the world and treated them to Austrian hospitality. New friends were made and old acquaintances renewed. The tenth jubilee brought WA Club members again closer together.

Old members and newcomers were graciously received by Renate Christiani


Art of one and the same family in Vienna over the last 200 years

In October, coordinator Aglaë Hagg-Thun organised a combined excursion about Leopold Kupelwieser’s and Prof. Hans Kupelwieser’s artworks. Ambassador (ret.) Walter Hagg gave a tour of Leopold Kupelwieser’s frescoes and ceiling paintings (1848/1850) in the Foreign Ministry’s Alois-Mock-Saal (formerly “Marmorsaal”).

Guided tour in the Marmorsaal with the frescoes of Leopold Kupelwieser

Warm hearted reception in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs with sweets for the children









At Prof. Hans Kupelwieser’s studio in the Wiener Prater, a specially designed game had been prepared for the children. Prof. Kupelwieser guided parents and adults through his lofts and ateliers. The “Lilliput-Bahn” took them to the “Meierei” and its playgrounds for a late lunch.

Prof. Hans Kupelwieser (r.) explains the pavillons for artists founded at the World Exhibition of 1873

Drive in the Liliput-Bahn through the Grüne Prater under pouring rain









(For further information click here: http://www.kupelwieser.at)

The newly opened Weltmuseum in the Hofburg’s former corps de logis

In October 2014, Welcome to Austria was among the last visitors to the Weltmuseum before it was closed for restauration. Only five days after the reopening, Science Coordinator Dr. Elisabeth Wolff and a Group of WA members had the great opportunity to be introduced to the new concept of the redesigned Museum by Director Steven Engelsman who then guided them through the most attractive new galleries.

Aztec emperor Montezuma’s headdress

Patio of the Hofburg’s corps de logis








(For further Information click here: http://www.weltmuseumwien.at )

Two days, four Castles and a glass of Uhudler

Statue at Burg Lockenhaus

On the second weekend of June, coordinator Anne Thun-Hohenstein took members of Welcome to Austria on a tour to Burgenland, Austria’s eaternmost region.

On day one, members enjoyed a guided tour at Burg Lockenhaus (1242) and the atmosphere of a medieval “knights’ festival”. A visit of Rudolf Kedl’s scultpure garden at Markt Neuhodis propelled them into the contemporary.


Along the Hungarian border with its lovely vineyards we went south to discover “Uhudler”, a local wine specialty. We tasted it in the unique Kellerviertel of Heiligenbrunn where the hotel owner gave his personal comments on the regional architecture and habits.

Rudolf Kedl

Kedl’s sculpture garden

A glass of Uhudler










On Sunday morning, the group went to the medieval town of Güssing with its majestic castle (1157) of the Hungarian Batthyány family. Heading North again, they passed by Schloss Rotenturm.

Batthyány Castle

Schloss Rotenturm










Lunch at a Restaurant on the border of a hidden lake was followed by the grand finale, a guided tour in Burg Schlaining (1271), also known as Friedensburg (“peace castle”) for its being the location of the Austrian Study Centre for Peace and Conflict Resolution.

Lunch at the fish restaurant

Burg Schlaining aka Friedensburg

First Vice president Angelika Saupe-Berchtold and Coordinator Anne Thun-Hohenstein with members of WA










(For further information click here: http://www.ritterburg.at, http://www.skulpturen-park.at, http://www.batthyany.at/burg_guessing.o.html , http://www.friedensburg.at, http://www.aspr.peacecastle.eu )

WA members after their visit of the Lehár-Schlössl

In May, Anne Thun-Hohenstein and WA members were received at the Lehár-Schikaneder-Schlössl for a memorable tour given by its owner, Mrs. Kreuzer. The famous composer of the silver age of operettas, Franz Léhar (e.g. “The Merry Widow”), lived and worked for many years in this charming jewel of architecture. The visit was followed by a stroll in the romantic Biedermeier garden.

Mrs. Kreuzer and member Dagny Herheim listening to Cloyd Beasley’s playing

Goddess Fortuna watches over the stairway hall









Contact Details

Welcome to Austria

Hofburg, Stallburg
Reitschulgasse 2/2.OG
A-1010 Vienna
Tel : +43-1- 535 88 36
Fax: +43-1- 535 88 37
e-mail: office@welcome-to-austria.org
web   : www.welcome-to-austria.org