Kunsthistorisches Museum, Vienna

Professor Mathew Rampley has been awarded a grant of £286,000 by the Leverhulme Trust for research into the history of museums and exhibitions of art and design in the Austro-Hungarian Empire.

The project, titled  Promoting National and Imperial and Identities: Museums in Austria-Hungary , examines the history of museums from the mid-nineteenth century to the collapse of the Empire in 1918. It is concerned in particular with the ways in which displays of art and design in museum were used to promote messages about political, social and cultural identity. Museums played an important role in the formation of states in Europe in the nineteenth century, and in Austria-Hungary they became drawn into the ethnic conflicts that marked the final decades of its existence. Hence, the project looks at museums not only in Vienna but in the other important political and cultural centres of the Empire, such as Budapest, Prague, Cracow and Zagreb.

[Image: Kunsthistorisches Museum, Vienna. CC BY-SA 3.0  Manfred Werner -  Tsui  - Own work]