Our tour around Vienna’s museums was brief, as will this post be. On one hand, entry charges are pretty steep. On the other, most of the museums are pretty expansive and each one will take most of the day to get around. Good value for money? If you’re a fan of a particular place, then yes. If you want to do some light browsing across multiple museums, then perhaps not. We got to visit three museums. I’ve already mentioned our trip to see the Penacho, at the Fur Volkekund – aka the Ethnology Museum. But the first we went to was ‘the one’. The absolute must. The Belvedere, which contains the world’s largest collection of Gustav Klimt paintings. Happily, it’s the first museum you come across having bundled out of the train from Bratislava. It’s just across the road. Sort of.
The photo above wasn’t taken at the Belvedere though. Like most museums, the hallways and exhibition rooms are patrolled by moustachioed Foto Fuhrers, screaming ‘nein, nein photos!’ at hapless tourists. It was so ineffectual though. Firstly, because the tourists so outnumbered the monitors, that countless photos were taken anyway. Secondly, because there’s not a single Klimt painting not already available on the web anyway. Why not fire all the Foto Fuhrers, and employ a single Digital Community manager to collate all those shared images and turn them into a marketing campaign?
The image above came from the Kunsthistorisches Museum – the name offers so many potential puns. But I’ll leave it alone. There are some areas in this place where photos are permitted. But not the above shot. I did that on the sly. A bit of renegade photography. It’s a Klimt mural. One of more than a dozen. Fabulous, all of them. Klimt is everything that art should be. Innovative. Experimental. Engaging. Imaginative Fun. The rest of the museum is fabulous too. I’d have loved to have spent a little longer in there. A whole day in fact. There are luxurious thick sofas in front of every giant painting.
We stayed long enough to have coffee in the fabulous dining room, beneath the ornate dome. Actually I went for a hot chocolate. It was topped up with orange liqueur. New for me. I’ll definitely try it again. I’ll order a bigger cup next time. It helped warm up my bones a bit. I grabbed the below shot of the coffee room, on panorama mode. The Fuji X-S1, like most cameras of its type, produces fairly low res panoramas. If you’re looking for top quality, best to take a slew of shots and then turn them into panoramas with software such as Microsoft ICE. But the in-camera option is so easy. It’s good enough for me.