Austrian art in Prague bridges political divide

Wednesday marked the opening of a new exhibition at the Austrian Culture Institute, which brings together works from three prominent turn-of-the-century artists: Gustav Klimt, Oskar Kokoschka, and Egon Schiele. Although Austrian, all of these artists had Czech roots, each having one parent from Bohemia. Radio Prague's Pavla Navratilova was at the opening and brings back this report.

Klimt, Schiele, and Kokoschka are some of the most well-known and best-loved artists of the modern period. Austrian with Czech roots, they played a prominent cultural role in an age when Czech-Austrian relations were at their most volatile. But in terms of art, their paintings transcended borders to produce some of the most startling artwork of the 20th century.

I talked with the director of the Austrian Culture Institute Manfred Poiger who emphasised that the exhibit reflects the feel of early 20th century Vienna. The exhibit was opened by Austrian Ambassador, Klas Daublebsky, who stressed that Czechs and Austrians had much in common, despite a rather troubled relationship. And you can see the exhibition for yourself at the Austrian Cultural Institute until the 16th of March.

Author: Pavla Navrátilová
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