Press information 2019 Linz: a city trip into the future
Whether you’re on a boat on the Danube, at one of its fabulous concerts, exploring high above the city, with a spray can in your hand at the graffiti gallery or taking part in experiments in the city’s museums, Linz surprises, delights and inspires change. Immerse yourself in this unique atmosphere once and be forever inspired to return.
Visitors are swept away by the relaxed atmosphere of the city centre, the buildings whose magnificent architecture spans the ages, the wide range of cultural events and the Danube, which is integral to Linz – now more than ever. The banks of the river offer ideal places to both relax and take in some culture. Linger a while in the green spaces and local eateries during the day, and wonder at the futuristic, illuminated museum façades at night. Explore fascinating exhibitions ranging from contemporary artworks at the Lentos Kunstmuseum to the innovative developments and projects showcased at the Ars Electronica Center. At the Museum of the Future, pioneering technology meets visionary media arts.
A different kind of art project can be enjoyed a little way downriver in the industrial harbour. Mural Harbor is Europe’s largest gallery of graffiti and murals, with more than 100 spray-painted works exhibited along the dockside. And in the nearby industrial district, voestalpine Stahlwelt offers a unique glimpse behind the scenes of the world-famous steel producer.
Centre of creativity: City of Smart Tourism
Life in this Upper Austrian city is shaped by the river. The Danube flows right through the centre, breathing new life into the city through change. Linz is all about forward-looking trends and modernity, but it knows how to treasure its history and roots. All of the influences of the past have made the city what it is today: one of Austria’s most exciting urban centres, with a lively cultural scene.
What makes Linz stand out from other cities is its authentic character and constant drive to develop further. One special milestone was achieved in 2009, when Linz became European Capital of Culture. The list of new attractions launched that year is impressive, from the Schlossmuseum and voestalpine Stahlwelt to the Ars Electronica Center and the redevelopment of the Pöstlingberg railway.
Another legacy of Linz09 is the Musiktheater, which was opened in 2013 and is one of Europe’s most state-of-the-art opera houses. The ideas, projects and initial stimulus arising from the year as Capital of Culture are still inspiring visitors and residents alike today. And exactly ten years on, Linz now bears the title of European City of Smart Tourism for its cultural heritage and creativity. Key to securing this award was the city’s unique identity, which is shaped by change and a forward-looking attitude. At the same time, people always remain the focus of the UNESCO City of Media Arts. Anyone with a healthy sense of curiosity is sure to enjoy an unforgettable stay here on the Danube and experience the change that radiates from Linz
Focus for 2019: the future in Linz
Exactly ten years ago, the title European Capital of Culture 2009 gave Linz an important boost that persists to this day. The link between culture and tourism is stronger than ever and is considered a crucial factor in the perception of Linz as an innovative hotspot for culture, art and creativity in Austria. But to mark this important tenth anniversary, the city on the Danube is looking forward, not back, with its theme for the year: the future. And it’s positively palpable in many places in the city.
Ars Electronica Center – the Museum of the Future
Visitors can see a 3D printer in action, learn about intelligent materials, experience virtual reality and enjoy breathtaking multimedia presentations at the Deep Space 8K exhibit. The Ars Electronica Center is truly deserving of its subtitle, “Museum of the Future”, and is also the flagship institution of the UNESCO City of Media Arts. This year, the Ars Electronica Center will be presenting brand-new exhibition content centred on artificial intelligence. But its exhibitions aren’t the only thing that make it such a unique Austrian museum. The Ars Electronica Center also features a distinctive tour concept. Instead of leading traditional museum tours, “Infotrainers” are available to interact with museum visitors in locations linked to their own personal experiences in the fields of media, digital technology and the natural sciences.
The Museum of the Future, together with its annual festival and the Prix Ars Electronica competition, is an important linchpin when it comes to the city taking an integrated approach to digitalisation and moving into the future.
Sinnesrausch – art in motion
One of the most successful cultural formats launched in 2009, the city’s year as Capital of Culture, is the “Höhenrausch” exhibition. It has kept on reinventing itself ever since and has now registered more than one million paying visitors. And 2019 is no different: the latest exhibition, “Sinnesrausch”, will lead visitors from installations in the OK cultural centre up onto the roof and to the top of its tower with its panoramic view of the city. The exhibition is open from 24 May to 13 October.
Tabakfabrik – creativity in an architectural treasure
Industrial gem, centre of the creative industry, up-and-coming trendy district: the Linz Tabakfabrik is rapidly becoming another exciting cultural hotspot in the city. When construction of the building started in 1929 according to the plans of star architects Peter Behrens and Alexander Popp, the project stood for new beginnings and change. In recent years, the site, which spans 80,000 square metres, has developed into a kind of think tank, where creative people, agencies and start-ups have since taken up residence. Culture has also found a place there in the form of the Valie Export Center, the Prague School of Photography and caricaturist Gerhard Haderer’s School of Disobedience.
The Lentos Kunstmuseum, which exhibits contemporary artworks, is located right on the banks of the Danube. With its striking architecture and LED-covered façade, the building dominates the cityscape of Linz. The state-of-the-art institution provides a unique atmosphere in which to see contemporary art. Works exhibited range from the nineteenth century to the early modern (Klimt, Schiele, Kokoschka) and expressionist periods through to the latest perspectives from contemporary artists (Valie Export). An exhibition featuring pieces from the important collection of art dealer Wolfgang Gurlitt is planned for the autumn. The show can be seen as a continuation from 2009 in that the exhibitions ten years ago placed a special focus on the historical legacy of the city and on contemporary history. This theme has been consistently pursued to this day.
The future in Linz’s concert halls
Linz Musiktheater is one of the most modern opera houses in Europe. Since it opened in 2013, the company has received numerous awards. The disciplines of dance, musical theatre and opera provide a rich and varied programme, complemented by numerous performances by the musicians from the famous Bruckner Orchestra. The acoustics of the Brucknerhaus concert hall and its unique location on the banks of the Danube delight audiences as well. There are also first-class concerts by national and international artists, such as the Munich Philharmonic and Cameron Carpenter, to enjoy during the Bruckner Festival from 4 September to 11 October.
Mural Harbor graffiti gallery
Become a graffiti artist in the heart of the industrial district: try your hand at Linz’s Mural Harbor graffiti gallery. Over recent years, well over 100 brightly coloured artworks have sprung up over the façades of the industrial buildings to heights of up to 40 metres. After a boat tour through the harbour, visitors can enjoy a crash course in the colourful art of graffiti.
A weekend in Linz
A three-day break from €109 per person Two nights with breakfast in the hotel of your choice and a three-day Linz Card, which includes:
- free entry to Linz’s museums
- free travel by bus and tram
- a Danube Culture voucher worth €10
- plus 20 additional discounts