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Albertina Museum, Vienna, Austria Photo
Albertina Museum, Vienna
SOURCE: Wikipedia Commons photo.

One of the world�s finest art collections has been housed since 1805 in the Albertina museum, a grand Viennese palace in the Neoclassical style. The palace takes its name from the collection�s founder, Duke Albert of Saxe-Teschen (1738-1822), a son-in-law of Austrian Empress Maria Theresa (1717-80). It was built in 1744 for Count Emanuel Teles Silva-Tarouca (1696-1771).

In 1919, the newly established Republic of Austria expropriated the Habsburg palace and the art collection it contained, now renamed the Albertina Graphic Art Collection. Severe bomb damage in 1945 destroyed many of the staterooms, the palace facades and the access ramp leading to the bastion.

The palace underwent complete renovation in 2000-2003. The facades were returned to their original appearance, the historical state apartments were fully restored, and the Danubius Fountain was reactivated. Four state-of-the-art exhibition rooms were created. Architect Hans Hollein canopied the entrance to the museum with a spectacular 64-metre titanium wing-shaped roof. Installed in 2004, the daring structure has become the hallmark of the new Albertina.


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