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Imperial Impressions.

The Emperors and their Court Artists

Kunstkammer: 13 February 2024 – 13 October 2024 | Coin Collection: 13 February 2024 – 23 March 2025


The aim of the exhibition is to emphasize the role of the medal as an object of art. Moreover, it will illuminate how the role of artists developed from the universal genius of the Renaissance and early Baroque to specialists for separate genres of the arts during the later years of the monarchy. 

The exhibition Imperial Impressions is dedicated to artists who were active at Habsburg courts and residences. It focuses on masters who were at ease in several genres of the arts, such as architecture, painting, and sculpture. It is the fact that they also made medals that warranted their inclusion in this exhibition, however. As the objects on display were mostly produced for members of the imperial family, they were of the highest quality. The period of the presented artists ranges from around 1500 to the end of the monarchy in 1918.

The Kunstkammer will show significant medals, each in conjunction with well-known artworks by the same artist. The Coin Collection will provide wider and more in-depth context. The presentation of renowned works together with exceptional works from the field of medal-making art introduces visitors to a new, unusual viewpoint at familiar objects from the collection.

The exhibition comprises about eighty works: medals, coins, paintings, gemstones, ivory and goldsmithery. Most object stem from the museum’s own collection, complemented by loans from the Numismatic Collection at the Staatliche Museen zu Berlin and from the Tyrolean Landesmuseen



Maria Theresa as Juno Moneta, Matthäus Donner (1704–1756), 1750, non-ferrous metal (cast), H 68 cm. Kunsthistorisches Museum Vienna, Kunstkammer, inv. KK 6142
Emperor Maximilian II, Antonio Abondio (1538–1591), c.1570/75, coloured wax, pearls, obsidian?, silver, dia. 115 mm. Kunsthistorisches Museum Vienna, Kunstkammer, inv. KK 3074 (from the Kunstkammer of Emperor Rudolf II)
Medal of Ferdinand, Brother of Charles V, Leone Leoni (1509–1590), c.1551, silver (cast), dia. 76.2 cm. Kunsthistorisches Museum Vienna, Coin Cabinet, inv. 766bβ
Emperor Franz Joseph and Empress Elisabeth, Dedicated by the City of Vienna on the Occasion of Their Silver Wedding Anniversary, obverse Anton Scharff (1845–1903) / reverse Josef Tautenhayn the Elder (1837–1911); chiselled by Stefan Schwartz (1851–1924), Vienna, dated 24 April 1879, silver (probably cast), dia. 170 mm. Kunsthistorisches Museum Vienna, Coin Cabinet, inv. 130724

Exhibition Catalogue
Imperial Impressions

Available in German only!
Die Reihe der hier behandelten Künstler, die in den habsburgischen Residenzen und Höfen oder in deren Umfeld tätig waren, setzt um 1500 ein und reicht bis zum Ende der Monarchie im Jahre 1918. Ziel der Publikation ist, das Medium der Medaille als Kunstobjekt herauszustellen.

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13 February 2024
to 23 March 2025

Kunsthistorisches Museum Wien
Maria-Theresien-Platz, 1010 Wien

Tue – Sun, 10 a.m. – 6 p.m.
Thursday, 10 a.m. – 9 p.m.
Monday closed

Holiday opening hours


The presentation is included in the museum admission.

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