Our brief encounter with Vienna’s museums continues… Back at the MQ (MuseumsQuartier Wien), we went straight to Kunsthalle Wien, a smaller, more contemporary structure. Housing XTRAVAGANZA (Staging Leigh Bowery) collection of costumes, photos, short films, TV episodes, of this larger than life character that was Leigh Bowery. My first experience of Leigh’s huge figure was on works by Lucian Freud but I knew close to nothing about him, until this colourful and shocking collection. You see Leigh’s star was shot to fame at the beginning of 80’s when access to Internet was not yet commercialised (hard to believe there was life before Internet)!! and then, he sadly passed away far too young, in 1994. XTRAVAGANZA is there until February 2013, absolutely and kinkily delightful. Just look at some of Leigh’s costumes:
After a short break for lunch in one of the MQ complex cafes/restaurants, which by the way are very pleasant and good value for money, we made a 360° turn and headed off across the street, to Kunsthistorisches Museum, which sounds somewhat schizophrenic but oh! well, what doesn’t these days? Now, I can’t claim I’ve seen a great many, but this has to be one of the most beautiful museums housing important works from Greco-Roman antiquity to Egypt and Near East. But we’ve only been to the picture gallery which hosts a huge number of Peter Paul Rubens paintings plus -I was surprised to learn- owns the largest Pieter Bruegel the Elder collection in the world, including The Hunters in the Snow(1565) one of my favourites, being copied sur place:
To top it all up, the museum has the most beautiful museum cafe ever! Just have a look:
All photos by Konstantinos Implikian.